Spring is just around the corner and after this intense winter, we could only hope to start seeing green again! With St. Patrick’s day this month, every seasonal section of department and grocery store promote green. The kind of greens we should be promoting this month are all of those leafy and nutritious green vegetables! This month, try to incorporate new vegetables into your everyday life to give you that extra boost.
Eating greens does not mean that you have to eat salads all of the time. There are so many ways to get extra greens in your diet such as smoothies, soups, omelets, and even stir fry! Growing up, my mother used to struggle with getting my brother and I to consume greens. She started making us smoothies. She took about a ½ cup of almond milk, ½ cup of spinach, and a frozen banana to blend it all up. Spinach is a pretty mild leafy green, so you could not even taste it when combines with the banana. I still use this smoothie recipe today, adding a little bit of kale as well to get even more nutrients.
You might be wondering why you always heard as a kid “Eat your veggies!” Why are vegetables important to include in our diets? Most green vegetables contain vitamins A, C, and K along with potassium and fiber. The fiber from these vegetables help promote a healthy digestive tract and better bowel movement. Although vitamins can come from other foods such as fruit, we need to ensure that we receive these vitamins through our diet as the human body cannot produce its own. Vitamin A promotes better vision and healthier cells, vitamin C helps with cell growth and repair of tissues, and vitamin K regulates blood clotting and bone metabolism. Without consuming these nutrients in our diet, we are unable to carry out these functions that our allow our bodies to be healthy and happy.
You can start this journey of getting more greens just with your next trip to the grocery store! Most lettuce has its peak in the Spring, so that is always my go-to in March. Asparagus, artichokes, snow peas, and broccoli are all really notable vegetables to buy in the Spring. The best way to pick out these vegetables is to ensure there are so signs of browning or shriveling. Be sure to make the conscious decision to add more greens! This is the best way to celebrate March and St. Patrick’s day! Whether this be grabbing an extra bag of spinach to throw into your next soup or some broccoli to pair with whole grain pasta. Every nutrient and vitamin counts!