Today’s typical diet is meat-packed, dairy-packed, fat-packed, calorie-packed, and pretty colorless. The average American eats little in the way of farm-fresh veggies, let alone leafy greens. To children; they’re yucky, to adults (whose taste-buds are addicted to fats and sugars); they’re bland and boring. But these veggies, (which are in fact quite tasty) are amazing, nutrient-packed bundles of love for your body! Let’s break it down:
Leafy greens, (by which I mean veggies like kale, spinach, collards, arugula, cabbage, etc.) are some of the best sources of super-important, super-good for you nutrients. Adding them to your daily (or twice daily, or three times daily) diet is one of the best things you can do for your body. Greens are packed with Vitamins K, A, C, Calcium, Magnesium, Folate, Iron, and more! Many of these nutrients are especially important for women, who are at higher risk for problems such as osteoporosis and iron deficiency.
One serving of kale (about 1 c. chopped) contains 206% daily value of Vitamin A, 9% Calcium, 134% C, and 6% Iron, not to mention magnesium, phosphorous, and folate! Wow! So many diets are deficient in many of these nutrients, and look at how easy it is to get them! One serving of leafy greens a day included in to a healthy, varied diet, ups nutrient consumption a ton! And its so easy to do!
If the facts alone haven’t convinced you, here are some of my favorite ways to enjoy leafy greens!
Sauteed Dinosaur (or Lacinato) Kale with Apple Cider Vinegar and Gomashio
This is a great side dish to a healthy meal any time of the year! Simply saute the chopped kale in a little olive oil until it is wilted a bit, bright in color, and cooked through. Sprinkle with ACV and Gomashio (a toasted sesame seed and sea salt blend) to taste! Serve with hearty dishes (like whole wheat pasta, tomato sauce, and Abby’s Infamous Veggie Meatballs) to lighten it up!
Warm Rice Salad with Collard Greens and Fresh Tomato
This is yummy in the summer both as a light lunch or a side dish to a yummy grilled meal! Its especially good with farm-stand fresh tomatoes! Combine three cups cooked (still hot) brown rice, a large diced tomato, and 1 cup chopped, sauteed collards in a large bowl. Stir in a pinch of salt, pepper, 2 Tbls fresh squeezed lemon juice, and 1 Tbls olive oil. Sprinkled with gomashio, this dish is delicious!
When making a stir fry, toss in a handful of greens (kale, collards or cabbage would work best). Serve over rice and tops with your favorite stir-fry sauce!
If you’re a fan of juicing, be sure to throw in some leafy greens! You’ll get the nutrient benefits of the greens but you do lose the fiber.
If you eat eggs, add lightly sauteed greens to a frittata or quiche!
Another great recipe using greens is VeganYumYum’s BLT Salad! She uses dinosaur Kale (my favorite) and lets the dressing soften the raw leaves before serving!
Give some of the recipes a try, or if you have your own, I’d love to hear them! Enjoy your greens and keep living your life As Bold as Nature!