Updated: Sep 16, 2020
12 Diets in 12 Months
2020 Nutrition Challenge
APRIL: Vegan Month!
Week 1: Focus on Greens!
Greens are a must-have for vegans because they are so rich in calcium and iron. These are two of the most important nutrients you need. Calcium not only builds bone and teeth, but is critical to muscle function. Iron provides the heme needed in every red blood cell. Without it, the RBC cannot bind oxygen. And the potassium! Don't get me started on the potassium! So rich in this vital electrolyte - wow!
A vegan diet without a daily serving of greens is nearly unthinkable.
Also, greens are a great source for magnesium, which is used throughout the body in hundreds of functions: from enzymatic pathways to heart function. These greenhouses don't stop there! Also rich in Vitamins A, B's, C and K.
Finally, the chlorophyll in the greens is soothing to your digestive tract. Packed with fiber, this is a perfect combination to help heal your gut.
I admit, I struggled for a bit trying to crack the collard greens recipe code! I tried ordering at restaurants, and just told myself it was an acquired taste. I tried making it at home - nada. It must be something you grow up with...or gramma taught you.
...Thankfully those days are over! Try this amazing Rainbow Chard recipe!
I literally said, "Wow!" when I took my fist bite.
1 Bunch Rainbow Chard (aka Swiss chard)
1 Clove garlic, crushed
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp sea salt
2 tsp red pepper flakes
Sauté chopped stems sea salt, 1 clove crushed garlic, sea salt and red pepper flakes in olive oil until softened. Add chopped leaves, mix well, cover let steam for 3 minutes. Finish with a squeeze of lemon. SO EASY and DELICIOUS
KEY TO COOKING GREENS
A cast iron pan!
What? Yep. Just like preheating and oven - I heat up the cast iron pan for 4 minutes on medium heat. Turn off the heat for 2 minutes. Turn the heat back on to Medium-Low and follow the recipe! You won't need to add water as the greens release water as they soften. You can turn off the heat and let it sit for a few minutes and it will stay beautifully hot, but won't burn. I love you, cast iron pan!
If you're not ready to take the collard green plunge, you can rest easy. The BEST thing about greens, is that so many can be eaten raw. Spinach, Romain and Arugula are terrific salad builders. Micro-greens, or the first sprouts off the plant, are gaining popularity due to their tender and delicious nature.
Stay tuned for more Vegan insights as I blog my way through this challenge.
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Everyday is a new day!