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Julieanna Hever, MS, RD

Julieanna Hever, MS, RD

Posted February 23, 2010

Published in Food, Health, Video

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The Greatness of Greens

Read More: dandelion greens, disease prevention, dr caldwell esselstyn, eye health, greatness of greens, leafy greens, minerals, nutrient dense, phytochemicals, Plant-Based Dietitian, plant-based nutrition, spinach, vegetables, vitamins, whole foods

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If I were stuck on an island that was beautiful and peaceful; filled with my friends and family; abundant with new books to read, movies to watch, beaches for walking and playing; but I had to choose only one type of food that would sustain and nourish me for a long healthy life of relaxation and bliss, what would I choose? That's right! Of course, it is the only choice...leafy green vegetables. (Did you really think I would say chocolate???)

Leafy green vegetables are modern medicine in the magnificent quantity, quality and variation of nutrients it provides. They are rich in vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals and antioxidants that are critical for warding off heart disease, cancers, osteoporosis, type 2 diabetes and inflammation. Greens are genius at promoting weight loss, immunity, eye health, and hormonal balance. In terms of nutrient density, greens win with the greatest amount of nutrients per calorie. They are high in fiber, protein, calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, and vitamins K, C and folic acid. Additionally, they are swimming in a plethora of phytochemicals including lutein, beta-carotene, and zeaxanthin. With all of this nutritional punch, they provide minimal calories and fat.

As Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn says, the goal is not to drip, but to shower your body with greens as much as possible. There is an abundance of methods of increasing your intake of leafy green vegetables. They are easily hidden in smoothies and soups and they make a delicious accent to salads, all cooked entrees, as well as being fantastic on their own. I recommend testing your creativity and finding ways to incorporate green leafies into every meal of the day. With such a variety, this is not at all difficult. To name a few, there is curly kale, black kale, dandelion greens, collard greens, bok choy, spinach, arugula, swiss chard, rainbow chard, beet greens, romaine lettuce. And this is just the beginning! Imagine the possibilities!

Here are two videos of my two favorite green smoothies. I have one for breakfast every morning and it is the perfect way to start the day. Experiment with these recipes to make your favorite version. There are no rules...just mere guidelines. Greens are magic that can save your health, prevent disease, reverse disease, fuel energy, help recovery and repair, protect the GI tract, boost immunity, slow aging, and enhance beauty more than any other food, drug, supplement or cosmetic. Cheers to greens!


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