Let's all Get Festive with Red and Green Foods for Health!
December for many people is one of the most stressful and busiest ``food`` months in the year. As we get closer each day to the hustle and bustle (and fun!) of the Holiday Season, our days may be filled with parties, late nights, coffee fueled early mornings, and quite often the stress of finding the perfect gift for everyone.
It is during this time that many people fall away from healthy eating habits, and into high sugar, highly processed ``easy to grab`` meals and poor eating habits. Many often will comfort themselves by saying, I`ll get back on track in January.
The 'easy to grab' poor meal choices are often a case of not being prepared.
I've been there. If I've not had the time to do my meal prep on Sundays, after a busy day it's all too easy to pick up the phone, or go through the drive through to pick up dinner.
Preparation is the key!
However, if I know that I have everything ready in my fridge to just put together, eating well is not hard to do. The key thing is taking one day of the week, and spending an hour or so prepping for the week ahead. Many find Sunday a great day for this! Prepare and portion your snacks, and ingredients for your meals for the week. Batch cooking 2 or 3 meals ahead works well also.
Getting enough fruits and vegetables is so important
I hope many of you understand the importance of getting your 5 - 10 fruits and vegetables a day. You know that fruits and veggies provide key vitamins and minerals that our bodies need to stay healthy.
So, in honor of the festive season, I'm going to tell you exactly what amazing nutrients are in red and green vegetables!
Red vegetables contain Lycopene, ellagic acid, Quercetin, and Hesperidin, to name a few. These nutrients reduce the risk of prostate cancer, lower blood pressure, reduce tumor growth and LDL cholesterol levels, scavenge harmful free-radicals, and support joint tissue in arthritis cases.
Here a list of some great red fruits and vegetables:
- red peppers
- red onions
- red cabbage
- kidney beans
- pink grapefruit
- red grapes
Nutrients in Green Vegetables and Fruits Include Chlorophyll, fiber, lutein, zeaxanthin, calcium, folate, vitamin C, calcium, and Beta-carotene. The nutrients found in these vegetables reduce cancer risks, lower blood pressure and LDL cholesterol levels, normalize digestion time, support retinal health and vision, fight harmful free-radicals, and boost immune system activity.
Here's your list of some great green fruits and veggies!
- Leafy greens
- green peppers
- green beans
- green onion
- brussels sprouts
- Chinese cabbage
- green apple
- green grapes
- honeydew melon
Some quick red and green fruit/vegetable combos include:
- Red and green apple slices for a snack
- Adding red apple chunks to your favorite green salad
- Adding in a handful of kale or spinach to your soup just before serving
- Juicy pomegranate seeds tossed atop a green salad
- Piling mounds of chopped green and red veggies on your favorite pizza
Here's a quick and easy recipe that incorporates all the colors of the rainbow into a tasty side dish or complete meal!
Delicious Oven Roasted Vegetables
Peel, chop and slice your choice of any of the following:
- Red Onion
- Brussels Sprouts
- Sweet Potato
- Squash (butternut, delicata, acorn, etc.)
- Bell Peppers - yellow, orange, red or green
- Lightly toss with coconut, grapeseed, olive or camelina oil
- Add your choice of spices - I like using cumin powder, but even just salt & pepper are great!
- Spread on baking sheet and bake in 450 F oven for approximately 45 minutes or until all vegetables are cooked.
- Serve and enjoy!
Leftovers can be reheated or turned into soup by adding 4 cups of vegetable broth and blending.
What`s your favorite Red and Green Fruit or Vegetable?
Be sure to comment and let me know!