Rainbow Diet: Green
When we think vegetables, many of us find ourselves thinking of green vegetables— and our parents were right to tell us to eat them. These well known green foods are filled with chlorophyll which give them their beautiful color, and has shown, according to an Oregon State University study, to have anti-cancer properties. These green foods (because we are also still including fruits) are also rich in folic acid, vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin K, lutein, potassium, carotenoids, fiber, and even omega-3 fatty acids.
All these different vitamins, minerals, proteins and fibers offered by the green category foods provide many great benefits for the body. Folic acid has been known to help maintain new cells, and fiber has been known to reduce the risk of heart disease, infections, and respiratory disease by 24-59 percent according to express.com. Vitamin C also boosts the immune system, improves iron absorption, and promotes wound healing. These beneficial vitamins and minerals are also known to detoxify, rejuvenate the body, and protect the eyes for long-term visual health. Additionally, the food in this color category are well known to have more nutrients per calorie which makes them ideal for losing weight.
Some of the food in this category are: broccoli, cabbage, brussels sprouts, kale, bok choy, peas, watercress, spinach, chard, dark seaweeds, lettuce, kiwi, gooseberries, cucumbers, asparagus, honeydew melons, avocado, okra, artichoke, zucchini, green apples, green beans, green grapes, green peppers, and limes. It would be easiest to make a salad to include green food into your meals, but there are lots of other fun and interesting ways too.
For example, try this Beet Greens with Green Garlic recipe by chefinyou.com.
- 2 bunches (abt 550grams) Beet Greens (see Tips)
- 1 large Onion
- 3 small bulbs Green Garlic, chopped (see Tips)
- 1 tbsp Butter/Oil
- 1/2 tsp Cumin
- 1/4 tsp Turmeric, optional (see Tips)
- Salt to taste
1. Beet Greens : I weighed the Greens when they were with stems. I did that with the assumption that in cases where the stems are tender, you would use it in your cooking too. I used some of the stems in my cooking and discarded the ends that were tough. But in the freshest greens, you will find that most of the stem is tender and usable. I used the greens of both Golden and Red Beets.
2. Green Garlic : Use as much or as little of the Green garlic you like. They are milder than regular garlic and if substituting it for green garlic, use just 1-2 cloves instead.
3. Turmeric : Though its optional, I use it almost in all my recipes since its a disinfectant and I find it a precious spice to have in my pantry.
- Chop the greens from the beets
- Strip off the greens from the tough stems. The tender ones can be chopped into smaller pieces
- Clean them well
- Set aside to drain. While that happens, heat a pan. Add butter and then add cumin seeds. Once it starts getting aromatic, add the onion along with green garlic.
- Add a little salt and turmeric
- Give it a quick stir. Let this cook until the onions get soft (about 4-5 minutes in medium heat). You can also add some red chili flakes if you like some heat.
- While that’s sautéing, chop the greens into small pieces.
- Add the greens to the onion mixture. Mix until combined.
Note: If you are using lots of stems, then add them to the onion mixture, let it cook for a minute or two, or until soft, and then add the greens to the mix.
- Cook until the greens start wilting (takes about 5-8 minutes).
If you would like more information on this topic, please feel free to refer to these articles:
http://gentleworld.org/phytochemicals-eating-from-the-rainbow/#Health Benefits of: Green Fruits and Veggies