6 Dark Green Vegetables to Improve Your Diet

A meal consisting mostly of green vegetables is not common, unless you are a vegetarian. You may not care much for color in foods, preferring meat, fish and poultry instead. What you probably don’t know is that the more colorful the food, the better it is for your body.

Green vegetables are excellent sources of vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients. They contain vitamins (A, C, D, E and K), folate, iron, calcium, potassium and magnesium, which are essential for the immune system, blood circulation and bone formation. According to the food pyramid, next to cereals and grains, fruits and vegetables should make up bulk of your meals. Here are six dark green vegetables that you should include in your daily meals.

1. Broccoli

Although broccoli leaves may be edible too, florets are the part normally consumed. Broccoli is rich in vitamins (A, C and K), folate and fiber to sweep those toxins away. This vegetable is usually steamed, sauteed or added to casseroles. If you have an adventurous palate, try eating raw broccoli.

2. Kale

Kale has a cabbage-like flavor, although it is somewhat bitter. It goes well with soups, stir fried foods or those with sauces. It is an excellent source of vitamins A, C and K.

3. Mustard Greens

If you like eating a bit spicy food, then try this veggie. Mustard greens make a good salad, but you can also add them to soups or cook them with sauce. Mustard greens contain vitamins, folate and calcium.

4. Collard Greens

Collard greens have a mild flavor and can be stir fried with other vegetables. You can also prepare them as a side dish. Collard greens are a rich source of vitamins (A, C and K), folate, fiber and calcium.

5. Spinach

Spinach tastes a bit sweet, and can be eaten raw as salad or steamed. Try cooking it with a cheese sauce topped with bacon bits. You will surely get your dose of vitamins A and C, and folate for better blood production.

6. Romaine Lettuce

Romaine lettuce is commonly used for salads, tacos and sandwiches. You do not need to cook it to enhance its taste. In fact, it is usually eaten raw. Romaine lettuce is high in vitamins (A, C and K) and folate. In general, the more bitter the taste and the darker the color of Romaine lettuce, the more nutrients it contains.

Dark green vegetables are the most nutritious among the food groups. Incorporating them in your diet (the recommended daily allowance is at least half a cup a day) will keep your system running efficiently. Because of their high-fiber content, they aid in proper digestion. Some of them can even help prevent certain types of cancers and promote a healthy heart. In other words, the more greens you eat, the less prone you will be to disease and disorders.

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