I cannot get enough of my greens! I put them in my dinner, in my dressings, in my drinks and it’s likely you’ll also find them in my body scrubs! They are absolute powerhouses and have been proven as some of the most nutrient-dense foods out there!
With the general rule of green nutrition going from dark to light, with the darker the leaf the more nutritious it is, let’s pick through the bunches of greens that are so full of vitamin A, vitamin C, beta-carotene, folic-acid, calcium and chlorophyll- just to name a few of the nutrients you’ll find!
Primarily water, and extremely low in calories- lettuce is always higher on the list of ‘diet foods’. While not the most nutritious greens available, they are great meal fillers and are still a great and healthy food.
Examples: Crisphead, Butterhead, Cos or Romaine, Looseleaf, Oaklead, Coral, Frisee, Red Velvet and Radicchio.
Dark, Leafy Greens
Plant world royalty, this group of greens is rich in calcium, iron and magnesium. They also contain the vital antioxidants that help our bodies combat stress and toxins, and are also loaded with fibre and anti-inflammatory powers.
Examples: Some of my favourites include Collard Greens, Spinach, Kale, Swiss Chard and Rocket.
The most well-known, and the most powerful of this group is the classic cabbage. Full of fibre which aids our digestion and gut bacteria, they have also been noted for having more phytochemicals with anti-cancer properties than any other vegetable. These help increase the antioxidant defense mechanism in the body, and help with chemical and hormone detoxes.
Examples: As well as cabbage, this group includes brussel sprouts, radish, turnip, broccolini and broccoli- or as Emily and I like to call them, trees.
These ‘weeds’ are extremely healthy- and can also be nourishing and healing herbs. From the dandelion to the purslane, many of these wild greens can be eaten from the flower and leaves through to the roots. Just be careful and sure that you know what you’re eating- don’t eat any and every flower you find along the way!
Examples: Swin Cress, Chickweed, Amatranths, Nettle, and Huazontle (it’s related to Quinoa!)
While we often use these just as flavourings and some extra seasoning, these aromatic plants should not be overlooked. Often used as digestants, they can aid in the digestive process and help relieve digestive discomfort. Adding fresh and dried herbs to your meals is one of the fastest, easiest and healthiest ways to enhance the flavour, variety and nutrients of what you are eating.
Examples: Rosemary, Parsley, Chives, Kaffir Lime, Mint and Lemongrass just to name a few!
Try my two recipes below which are packed with green goodness!