We checked in with Splendid’s Kim Rose, a registered dietitian nutritionist, for her professional thoughts on all things green (nutritionally speaking).
Name one color you see on a daily basis. Blue and brown may come to mind, ranking among the highest; however, the color green is also nearly everywhere you could look, making it one of the most popular hues recognized by human eyes. Grass, money, tree tops and green lights are all different shades of green. It's no surprise that this color is associated with life, growth, energy and fertility, even when exhibited on our plates.
Have you realized that some of the healthiest foods are green? That’s right, I’m talking about spinach, kale, broccoli and so many others. These foods provide vitamins and minerals that supply the body with energy. For instance, iron is an important mineral found in naturally green foods. We need this every day. Without an adequate intake of iron, fatigue and weakness are likely to occur. In a society that often champions the consumption of golden brown and delicious foods, there is little to no wonder why iron-deficient anemia is so common. Depending on age, adult men and women need anywhere between 11-18 mg of iron daily. But instead of focusing on the exact numbers, it’s best to eat a diversified diet including a variety of green, plant-based foods. And remember, greens can be delicious too.
Iron is found in both animal-based and plant-based sources. Plant-based sources of iron are dark-green leafy vegetables. Some great meal choices that contain these kinds of greens are Splendid Spoon's Mint Chip Smoothie, Green Goddess Bowl, Power Greens Smoothie and Masala Khichri Bowl. The cool thing about greens is that there are several kinds with unique qualities. For instance, you may like the peppery taste of arugula, but if not, it's no problem. Try a more mild tasting green such as spinach or kale, which are well-suited for sautéing or steaming. Other green foods like spirulina can be added to smoothies, broccoli or collard greens. Additionally, greens like spirulina don't change the main taste of the entree, but do add a nice texture contrast to mix things up a bit. Splendid Spoon’s Detox Shot, Lentil and Kale Soup, and Kale Pesto Noodles are all tasty examples of the variety that green veggies can offer.
Getting the adequate amount of greens in your diet does not have to be complex. My best piece of advice for you when it comes to consuming greens is to try a variety. Either way you look at it, greens are superfoods that provide the body with awesome benefits. And because they come in so many different forms, flavors, and textures, I'm confident you'll find something that suits your palate. So enjoy the search, and bon appétit.