Your parents probably always told you to eat your veggies and you probably didn’t listen. Doctors are sternly warning people about the need to eat more produce. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported only 8.9% of adults in the U.S. were eating the recommended amount of vegetables. Most barely eat one serving a day. After reading this blog, you’ll know exactly which vegetables to load up on when you hit the grocery store.
The vibrant orange color indicates high levels of carotenoids, the powerful compounds that reduce risk of types of cancer and eye disease. Other vegetables in the same color spectrum have similar nutritional benefits, but carrots are the easiest to prepare and enjoy. Try roasting them just like cauliflower or Brussels sprouts, or tossing some into your salad!
While they are normally eaten for their flavoring rather than their health benefits, onions can do a world of good for your body. The skin extract can help lower blood pressure for adults with hypertension and are good for those watching their weight. Onions are a great base for any soup, stew, or braise. Or you can caramelize them for a sweet topping (try it on a pizza, yum)!
When they aren’t fried in grease or doused in butter, potatoes are a nutritional powerhouse. A single potato is about 100 calories and contains tons of vitamins C and B6. They even contain more potassium than a banana. Potatoes are important for your body’s proper functioning but the debate about whether this electrolyte can help eliminate cramping during exercise is still up in the air. Roasted potatoes with some herbs and olive oil or putting healthier toppings on a stuffed potato are great healthy alternatives.
This crunchy vegetable is a lot more nutritious than the blue cheese dressing or fried wings it usually accompanies. 1 cup of chopped stalks is barely 16 calories and provides you with vitamin A and folate. It is an excellent source of vitamin K, a major nutrient for bone and blood health. Chop the stalks into 1-inch lengths, toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper, then bake the celery in a hot oven until the edges brown. This roasted veggie is surprisingly delicious and is great for when you’re sick of the plain raw celery.
This veggie is packed with water and offers much more than just a spicy kick in your salad. A full cup of radishes contains only 19 calories plus vitamin C and fiber. They can lower your cholesterol due to the phytosterol in the vegetable. The bunches with the greens still attached are much better than the bagged ones; they are much fresher and you nearly get a bonus veggie in there! Make sure to rinse the radishes prior to cooking. Throw those greens in a salad or sauté them like spinach. As for the roots, you can give them the skillet treatment and enjoy on top of chicken, fish, or even salads.