There are many ways to eat your greens, which includes salads, soups, smoothies and stir-fries. Although they can be cooked or steamed, they are best when eaten raw as that ensures that all enzymes and vitamins are available in their natural state. Enzymes are crucial because they are the key that allows the body to absorb and create other nutrients.
Even though greens are one of the most nutritious foods on the planet, they are often avoided by many because they are not the tastiest foods. They do not contain the valuable sugar molecules that contribute to the sweet and favorable taste that is found in fruits and many other foods. Therefore, the greens are often avoided or consumed only in small quantities.
A common reason why you might not like the greens is because your body craves and enjoys the foods that are already in your bloodstream. This means that if you do not consume greens on a regular basis, then your body will naturally reject the taste of them. But if you eat them regularly, the nutrients from the greens will build up in your system, which then allows you to develop a taste for them to the point where you can enjoy them just as much as any other food.
Here are a few ways to incorporate more greens into your diet.
Green salads, such as Caesar salads, and garden salads are a popular way to eat greens. Lettuce, collards, spinach, kale and other leafy greens go good in a salad by themselves or along with other garden vegetables, including cucumbers, tomatoes and onions.
Many commercially packaged dressings are available to help provide extra flavor to the greens. These types of dressings are generally high in artificial preservatives, flavorings and other man-made ingredients, which I prefer not to consume anymore. Nonetheless they are a good way to help you to get accustomed to the taste of many greens when used in moderation.
Once you begin to enjoy the greens you can then ease up on the commercially packaged dressings and begin to make your own.
Lemon Juice, olive oil, vinegar, sea salt and various herbs and spices are great when mixed together and drizzled over a green salad. For extra fat, the green salads can also be topped with avocados, or toasted nuts and seeds.
Many greens, such as broccoli, asparagus and kale are excellent when they are lightly steamed. After steaming, the veggies can be drizzled with a light oil, lemon juice and a sprinkle of sea salt. When prepared in this manner, the vegetables can be served as a side dish or even as a meal.
Just remember that steaming the greens will destroy some of the vital enzymes that are needed for proper digestion.
Stir-fries are another great way to prepare your greens in a delicious fashion. Green peppers are popular, but spinach, Chinese cabbage, asparagus and broccoli can also be used. The key to remember here is that some greens are more tender than others and therefore, should be added towards the end of the cooking process.
Again, the heat will destroy some of the nutrients, which means that for optimum health, you should stir-fry the vegetables only on occasion or when a craving for something cooked arises.
Cabbage, peppers, celery and kale go good in a variety of soups. These include cooked soups as well as many raw soups. Cucumbers and peppers are commonly used in raw soups with tomatoes and other vegetables. Many herbs and spices can also be added to these soups in order to add more flavor.
Basically anything goes when it comes to wraps. Peppers, zucchini, celery, cucumbers and other greens can be finely diced or slivered and wrapped up along with other ingredients. Many leafy greens, such as kale, collards and cabbage are fairly flexible and can be used as the wrapper itself. This eliminates the need for corn or flour tortillas, which normally are not a healthy choice unless you make them yourself.
Dips and Salsas
Spinach, parsley and cilantro are a few greens that you can use in delicious dips for crackers and corn chips. They go good with garlic, onion and other herbs and spices in dips or in salsas with tomatoes and avocados. Avocados are high in healthy fats that are able to provide a rich creamy or chunky texture to the final product, depending on how you prepare them.
Green or Fruit Smoothies
Smoothies are another great way to obtain all the nutritional values of greens. Green smoothies are suitable for those who already have developed a taste for the greens, and fruit smoothies are great for those transitioning to the raw diet. Basically any type of leafy green can be added to a fruit smoothie in small quantities in order to allow the fruit to mask the bitterness of the greens. Then as you become accustomed to the greens, you can gradually begin to add more.
Lemon juice, sea salt and other herbs and spices are great for helping to eliminate the bitterness of greens as well. You can also add in many tasty superfood powders, including raw cacao, acai and maca, to these smoothies for richer and more flavorful smoothies.
Another way, and the quickest way to get the nutrients from greens into your body, is to juice the greens. Juicing eliminates the fiber, which then eliminates the need for the digestive process. As a result, the juice gets absorbed into the bloodstream almost immediately.
As with green smoothies, green juice is also not suitable for those who are in the early process of transitioning to more greens. A good way to get accustomed to green vegetable juice is to juice a small amount of greens with lots of tomatoes or cucumbers. You can also add lemon and salt to help eliminate the bitterness and enhance the flavors of the greens.
Basically all greens can be juiced in this manner including kale, spinach, broccoli, dandelion greens and cabbage.
Lettuce, cilantro, mint, matcha and certain sea vegetables can be used to make a rich green tea. The tea can serve as a substitute for the morning coffee or as a substitute for other unhealthy drinks at the dinner table.
Greens can also make for great snacks. Celery sticks, green peppers and cucumbers are good when served with a nut pate, almond or peanut butter. The veggies can be cut up in advance and are easy to take along wherever you go. Kale can be broken into pieces and coated with lemon juice and other flavors and dehydrated to make kale chips.