We all know we need to eat more fruits and vegetables, but it’s time we make sure that we’re eating a variety of different types, rather than focus on the number per day. Fruits and vegetables provide a variety of micro nutrients (vitamin and minerals) that are key to our physical and mental health. They don’t directly fuel us but the nutrients they contain help us to extract the fuel from the rest of our food and keep many of the intricate systems in our body working as they should.
Green leafy vegetables are considered the powerhouse of the five-a-day gang, providing a variety of vitamins and minerals, fibre and being so versatile when it comes to making delicious meals.
Green leafy veg includes spinach, kale, cabbage, bok choy, Swiss chard, lettuce, broccoli, peas, asparagus, watercress, rocket, and the current trend micro greens, that really pack a punch nutritionally. Even the green leaves that grow out the top of carrots, beetroots and turnips are classed in this category and are nutritionally beneficial, so next time you chop them off, why not make a stock or soup from them? This will also help reduce your food waste – it’s a win win!
So let’s see how they nutritionally pack a punch…
Each variety will be slightly different, but there are some core nutrients green leafy veg provide that we need to get our daily dose of:
- Vitamin A – healthy eyes and skin
- Vitamin C – supports a healthy immune system
- Iron – healthy red blood calls
- Magnesium – helps us extract the energy we need from food and regulate hormones
- Calcium – helps prevent osteoporosis
- Folate – particularly beneficial for pregnancy
Green leafy vegetables are key to your diet which is why our chefs are always looking to include more of them in their dishes, which aligns with our seasonal and fresh ethos.
Next time you are doing your weekly shop, why not pick up a green vegetable that you’ve never tried before? Asparagus is still in season in July and is great with a poached egg and roasted tomatoes on sourdough toast for a delicious and nutritious Sunday brunch treat!