Full Text of Krysten's Kitchen Blog on Greens
Let’s get real. How many of us really eat enough green foods and green veggies each day? Notice I didn’t say “vegetables” but “green vegetables”. One of the best things you can do for your body, besides drinking enough water every day, is to increase the amount of dark greens that you eat at each meal. The majority of Americans add potatoes, carrots and peas to their plate because they are considered vegetables and, while they do have their own benefits, not adding dark green vegetables is doing a disservice to your family.
Research by the Centers for Disease Control showed that only one in ten people eat enough whole food green vegetables. Vegetables help protect us against degenerative disease. As a result, the USDA Food Plate says we should be eating more vegetables than any other food. The U.S. Department of Agriculture says nearly 50 percent of vegetables and legumes available in the U.S. in 2013 were either tomatoes or potatoes.
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For most kids in the U.S. potatoes in the form of chips or french fries are the only consistent vegetable being consumed. Many kids even go days without eating greens. According to this article on Parents.com, nine out of 10 children fall short of the daily recommended veggie goals.
Greens are the number one food that you can eat regularly to improve your health, according to Jill Nussinow MS, RD and culinary educator in Northern California. Dark leafy greens contain fiber, vitamins, minerals and plant-based nutrients.
We try to include green veggies in almost every meal. I realize that sometimes there are picky eaters that like to shove their greens to the side of their plate and would probably like to shove it right into the trash. Because of that, the texture and preparation of that green veggie is probably key to whether that picky eater will devour it or scour at it.
Consider preparing green veggies a different way if you, your kids or spouse aren't a fan of them. Try roasting them with olive oil, sea salt, turmeric, black pepper and garlic. Try blending frozen zucchini into a protein smoothie and grating the zucchini into a meat sauce, chili or pasta dish. You can read more about Picky Eaters HERE.
Here's some food for thought: Kids will gladly eat green candies like M&Ms, Sour Patch Kids, cotton candy, or a lollipop, but won’t touch actual real green foods.
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Here are some green foods that you should add into your daily diet according to Delicious Living:
Pistachios - these nuts are hard to crack open, but they contain B6 and 18% of your daily requirement of B1. Add a handful to a ziplock pack and snack on them on-the-go or add it to salad. You could also top your brownies with them for crunch, flavor and color. Try them on these black bean brownies.
Spinach - adding a handful of spinach to smoothies, soups and dishes is the easiest way to increase greens in your diet. Spinach contains vitamins A, C, K and E as well as minerals that aid in muscle function. You could add some ribboned spinach to your meat sauce, chili, or even a smoothie.
Avocado - this creamy fruit is jam packed with potassium and folate. It’s great on toast, with eggs, or made into guacamole. It’s considered a “healthy fat” and can even lower harmful levels of cholesterol. Try making this chocolate pudding with avocados.
Zucchini - this low calorie green veggie might be my favorite. It’s high in fiber, rich in antioxidants and a wonderful source of potassium. It has more potassium than bananas! It is rich in B6, B1, B2, B3, zinc and magnesium. Try grating it with a cheese grater and adding it to your chili, making zoodles with meat sauce or my favorite: cutting it and freezing it to add to your smoothies. You won’t even taste it and you will get all the good benefits, all while it thickens your smoothie like a banana but without the sugar.
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Pines also has a bunch of products to help you get enough veggies into your diet. I love to use their Mighty Greens Superfood Blend powder in my smoothies for added veggies. You can add a tablespoon to your smoothie or juice for a serving of veggies. It’s really a simple and effective nutrient-dense, dark green blend of organic wheatgrass and organic alfalfa combined with other nutrient-dense superfoods… they are great for everyone in the whole family!
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I hope some of these tips help you increase the amount of green foods that you eat each day. People have reached out to me on Instagram saying things like, “I snuck some zucchini into my son’s smoothie and not only does he have no idea, but he loves it and is drinking it now!”
The more green the merrier! Try to figure out how you can add more greens to your meals - your body will thank you!
Here I am with Ron, one of the co-founders of Pines! He's way awesome!
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krystenskitchen ✅Food for thought: it seems that more people are afraid to try/eat GREEN foods because they are GREEN but they have no problem eating GREEN CANDY … I think people should be more concerned with what is making that candy GREEN than anything else. . 🌱Do you love GREENS? I sure do… especially zucchini, cucumbers, brussels sprouts, spinach & avocado! YUM! 🌱Do you eat greens every single day? What is your go to green veggie?
✅I just wrote a blog about GREEN FOODS & WHY YOU SHOULD EAT THEM and also why I 💚 @wheatgrass_people for everyone in the fam!
Delicious Living Magazine recognized Pines as the Supplement Award winner.