Hey you wonderful people! I hope you all had a great weekend. My time was spent with family celebrating my dad’s B-day.
Today I want to talk about how important it is to get your leafy greens in. Last year I read Victoria Boutenko’s book Green for Life: The Updated Classic on Green Smoothie Nutrition and it opened my eyes to the importance of leafy greens. I recommend this book to everyone. So much wonderful information. Thanks to my brother Nolan for gifting it to me for Christmas. In her book she states that “greens are not vegetables and greens are not starchy, greens are the only food group that helps digest other foods through stimulating the secretion of digestive enzymes. In the book she concludes that greens are the most essential food for humans. I know, everybody knows that eating fruits and veggies is good for you….
SO, why do we not eat more of them? Maybe we are not educated about it enough to make it a priority.
Greens are packed with nutrients. Below are some of the nutritional contents in greens.
- Vitamins– A,K,C,E and several B vitamins are in leafy greens
- Abundance of Protein(amino acids)- while one green does not have all the essential amino acids in it, eating a variety of leafy greens will cover all essential amino acids in abundance. If one green is low in one particular amino acids it is higher in another. Consuming the individual amino acids is much easier for our body to digest than consuming complex proteins like those found in animal protein. You can read more on this here.
- Calcium– the calcium in leafy greens is more effectively absorbed by the body than that found in cows milk. Click here to find out more about the harmful effects of dairy by Dr. Michael Greger MD as well as here. If you still drink cow milk I highly recommend following those links to educate yourself on dairy. I loved milk for 30 plus years of my life having several glasses a day, and cheese, oh my it is good, but after educating myself I no longer want to include that in my diet.
- Fiber– There is soluble and insoluble fiber and our bodies need both. Insoluble fiber is the fiber found in greens. Insoluble fiber is like a sponge and therefore it grabs toxins and takes them out of our body. The human body can not eliminate without fiber, so if we do not eat it toxic waste will build up in our body. Dietary fiber is found in plant foods. It is not in animal products.
- Minerals-Potassium, Iron, Zinc, Magnesium, folate and antioxidants are also found in leafy greens.
- Contains Chlorophyll(sunlights liquefied form)- it helps cleanses all of our organs, destroys some internal enemies and is just good for our overall health. Here is a 2 min. video from NutritionFacts.org on some benefits of chlorophyll.
- Good source of Omega-3s– Omega-3s can reduce inflammation, help with arthritis and depression.
Greens are also very alkalinizing. The more alkaline your body is the more healthy it is. Disease sets in when your body become too acidic.
There are so many ways you can get your greens in. Here are a few ideas.
- A huge salad– trying making your salad your main course. Make a big delicious one with all kinds of fruits and veggies that you like and eat it first and then the rest of your meal after that.
- Soups– you can add greens to soups. Make sure you cut them up well and then add them in. You are not loosing any nutritional value of the greens because it all goes into the soup.
- Sautee’ or steam– I love sautéed greens. Cut them well, and lightly sautee’ with a little water, garlic and onion topped with a little salt and pepper and they are delicious. You do loose some nutritional value this way so make sure you have raw greens in your day too.
- Smoothies: The easiest way to get an abundance of greens into your day is to have a huge green smoothie. Have one everyday for breakfast. It is quick to make and then take with you on the go if needed. This is also a great way to get greens in your kids.
While I am not great about it everyday most of my days look like this:
Breakfast: Green Smoothie(Couple handfuls of spinach, bananas, and other fruit of choice)
Lunch: Salad(a bed of greens with quinoa, sweet potato, tomato and avocado with a sweet chili sauce)
Dinner: Sautéed Greens along with my meal
I hope this inspires some of you to add more leafy greens into your day. Again I highly recommend reading Victoria Boutenko’s book Green for Life.
I hope you all have a wonderful day!
If Mama’s not Healthy, Nobody is Healthy!
NutritionFacts.org with Dr. Michael Greger MD
Greensmoothiesblog.com with Victoria Boutenko
Green for Life by Victoria Boutenko