March 1, 2016

March Wellness: Root for Winter Vegetables

It’s March… part way through winter, but not yet spring. By this time of the freezing season, many of us find it a challenge to eat nutritiously because fresh fruits and vegetables are not always readily available. But root vegetables might be just the thing to help you make nutritious meals for the remaining weeks of winter. Here are three to try.

Beets are one of the healthiest foods around. They have very few calories, very little fat and no cholesterol. They’re high in fibre and vitamins B3, B5 and B6. They lower cholesterol, have anti-aging effects and protect against strokes and coronary artery disease.
Beet Tip: Eat the green tops of the beets for vitamins A & C.

Contrary to the common myth, parsnips are not white carrots, though they do look alike. Parsnips are a great source of dietary fibre, so they help lower cholesterol. They contain B vitamins (folic acid, thiamin and B6), vitamin K and vitamin E. They also provide iron, calcium and potassium.
Parsnip tip: Because parsnips contain lots of starch, they cook quickly, so be careful not to overcook them.

Rutabagas look a bit like turnips, but they’re not the same. They’re actually a cross between turnips and cabbage. Rutabagas are very high in vitamin C; one cup contains over 50% of the daily recommended value. They’re also a good source of potassium and calcium, and their fibre content supports digestive health.
Rutabaga tip: Choose a smaller rutabaga for a sweeter flavour.

Other Roots to Dig
Other root vegetables that offer similar health benefits are sweet potatoes, yams and turnips… and you may not know that ginger is also a root vegetable.

For more posts like these, visit the Physical Wellness page.