December is here once again and people are about to get merry. That said the festive season is also a time to rejuvenate the body with some special foods that are only found during this month! It is important to understand that nature provides us with some amazing rich produce especially in winter. It would be silly not to take advantage and really treat yourself!
For this December, I would highly recommend trying out some of these yummy veggies:
This month, there will be a lot of white cabbage in the stores and markets. You already know about its crisp taste, but you may not have considered the many benefits that this vegetable contains. Cholesterol is one of the greatest fears of many people in an age when lifestyle diseases are prevalent. When you eat steamed cabbages, your body expels bile acid thus lowering cholesterol in your blood. The good thing also is that you can also eat cabbages raw!
Another plant that will invade the market and dinner tables of health-conscious families this December is beetroot. This coloured tap root has a sweet earthy flavour, a velvety and smooth texture and cam be combined with some fruits to make juices.
You may even want to combine beetroot with yoghurt and cream to make it even more delicious. Beets are full of antioxidants, protein, folic acid, potassium and fibre among other important minerals and nutrients. The benefits of beetroot include lowering blood pressure as well as fighting cancer-causing compounds.
Go apple crazy!! Orchards will be churning out an incredible number of different types of apples that some sweet, some sharp and always crunchy! They will also come in many colours including yellow, red, green and other shades. More importantly, use apples as snacks instead of sugary nibbles.
These fruits are packed with energy and can be combined with other fruits to make nutritious deserts. By making this choice, you will be guaranteeing your body healthy sugars, fibre, potassium, vitamin C and flavonoids. Your digestive processes will benefit a lot and your heart will be healthier than ever!
(ULTIMATE favourite!) Winter also brings to us one of the most balanced food crops – butternuts. You must know the small ‘pumpkins’ plants that are shaped like half-dumbbells or cylinders. They are found in very many places across the world. They are used to make soups, stews, curries and other dishes. Butternuts can be mashed or baked and enriched with cinnamon, nutmeg or cream. Eating butternuts squash will give you complex carbohydrates, sodium and low saturated fats. You will be eating food rich in magnesium, potassium, beta-carotene, calcium and manganese.
Whatever you feast on this December, don’t forget about the leeks! I know you are likely to say that this is just another form of onion and garlic. While this is true, but leeks are sweeter and have a stronger flavour than their cousins. You will find leeks on dinner tables where they make stews and soups more delicious and nutritious. They also create wonderful combinations with cheese and potatoes.
If you want side dishes that will enrich your supper, look no further than leeks. For making the wise decisions to eat leeks, brace yourself for a healthy serving of vitamin C, fibre and iron. Your heart and blood will perform at optimal levels if you make leeks part of your diet this December.
Another abundant vegetable during this December is very common but important – kale. This green veggie continues to grace the dinner tables of people who understand the importance of healthy eating. If you cannot get spinach or cabbage, try kale and you will not regret it! You may find it becomes one of your new favourites.
Apart from being a side dish, you can blend it with garlic and even add some soy to it. Your soups too will be richer with kale. Your reward is a healthy serving of vitamins E, A and C. You will also be giving your body a dose of important minerals such as sulphoraphane, iron, phytochemicals, potassium and calcium.
Another important fruits that will invade your territory this December is the pear. Just take a trip to the countryside and you will realise that there is a flood of these sweet fruits. More importantly, nature has timed the coming of this fruit with the holiday season so that you can enjoy their exceptional nutritional elements. Pears are available in many textures and flavours.
There are also a variety of ways for you to enjoy them. How about snacking on pears alone? Well, you can also poach them with vanilla or eat them with chocolate. Don’t forget to try a salad that contains pears. For all your efforts, expect energy, optimal and healthy sugar levels in your blood, copper, potassium and vitamins C and B6. Have a pear feast this December because it will be raining pears!
I hope that one of these veggies has caught your eye, if you do try something new I would love see! We would love to see some of your pictures, you can tag us on instagram @grace_guru or use any of our hashtags #graceguru #graceguruloves #gracegurulifestyle!
Your Grace Guru