13 Benefits of Leafy Greens
Although you look around you and you see golden, red and brown, we want to share with you that the true color of autumn should really be green. Why? Because this is the best time of year to grow those delectable, nutrient packed collards, kale, Swiss chard, arugula and many other tender, delicious leafy greens.
Why Go Green?
Green vegetables are the foods most commonly missing in nearly everyone’s diet. To create a balanced, immune-strong body, you must eat leafy greens at least twice a day.
Here is a partial list of the proven and likely benefits of consuming dark leafy greens:
- Greens help to strengthen the blood and respiratory system
- Leafy greens are high alkaline foods that may benefit people who are exposed to higher amounts of pollution in urban areas
- Improved liver, gall bladder and kidney function
- Strengthened immune system
- Improved circulation
- Promotion of healthy intestinal flora
- Cancer prevention
- Helps blood to clot
- Prevents age-related conditions such as cardiovascular disease
- Lowers cholesterol
- Preserve vision health
- Produce energy for your body
- Boost bone health
There are numerous other benefits of consuming dark, leafy greens but this should be a clear indication of their value to your daily diet. Even the USDA recommends eating a half cup each day to prevent nutrient deficiencies and serious illnesses.
What Should You Look for?
While romaine and spinach are technically leafy greens, there are many more varieties that are powerhouses of vitamins, minerals, and protein, not to mention all of their other fantastic attributes. So, skip the common ones and go for these:
- Swiss chard
- Beet greens
- Turnip greens
- Beet greens
- Bok Choy
Can Your Daily Multivitamin Provide You with These?
Protein, Vitamin A, Magnesium, Vitamin K, Vitamin C, Folate, Vitamin E, Vitamin B12, Niacin, Iron, Riboflavin, Chlorophyll, Fiber, tryptophan, Glucosinolates, Calcium, Vitamin B5, Lutein, Zeaxanthin and much, much more….
How Do You Get More Green in Your Daily Diet?
- Add a fistfull to your morning smoothie
- Add a bunch to your favorite soups
- Sauté with your favorite veggies
- Steam with your favorite veggies
- Use a leaf instead of a taco shell
- Use a leaf instead of a burger bun for your veggie burger
- Add leaves to your wraps, pitas and sandwiches
- Juice them
- Use a leaf instead of rice paper for spring rolls
- They make awesome pesto
Puree half arugula and half basil with either hemp seeds or pine nuts and garlic cloves, hemp oil, and a little nutritional yeast. Serve on pizza or over gluten-free pasta and tomatoes.
- Try a variety of methods like steaming, boiling, sautéing in coconut oil, water sautéing, waterless cooking, or lightly pickling. Boiling helps greens plump and relax. You can also drink the cooking water as a health-giving broth or tea if you’re using organic greens.
- Steaming makes greens more fibrous and tight, which helps you feel fuller, longer. This is a great method to help curb your appetite for those trying to lose weight.
- Raw salad is also a wonderful preparation for greens. It’s refreshing, cooling, and supplies live enzymes.
As you watch those leaves falling as well as the temperatures, take heart, this is the season where the most nutritious foods come alive. Think Greens!!