Once thought of as the vegetable of the wealthy, asparagus has now become mainstream and spring is the best time to try some. It is packed with vitamin K and folate and is best when grilled or roasted with a tiny bit of lemon and olive oil.
People tend to be intimidated by this fiber-filled vegetable because it looks strange. But it is loaded with calcium and potassium, and you can cook it easily by just steaming it. They are a great alternative to chips for dipping in your favorite dip.
This ruby red jewel is a nutrition powerhouse containing fiber, folate, potassium, iron, magnesium, manganese and vitamin C and that’s just the beet itself. The beet greens are a source of protein, folate, fiber, vitamins A, C, E and K, thiamin, riboflavin, vitamin B6, potassium and manganese. During the spring, beets tend to be tenderer and can be easily incorporated into salads. Beets are so amazing that they were served in space during the Apollo 18 mission.
Filled with beta-carotene and vitamin A, carrots are their sweetest during the spring. They can be eaten raw as a great snack or grilled/roasted to enhance their flavor. This is a great time to try the red, yellow or purple varieties, which are packed with anthocyanins, which are powerful antioxidants.
During the spring, radishes are smaller, sweeter and even crunchier. They are a great source of vitamin C and are rich in minerals like sulphur, iron and iodine. The spiciness of this vegetable makes them an easy snack or perfect addition to any salad.
The idea that spinach makes you strong is somewhat true. Spinach is an amazing source of calcium, vitamins A, K and iron. Since calcium helps with bone development, and iron strengthens your blood cells, it really does aid in making your body stronger. During the spring, the leaves are smaller and tenderer. Since spinach contains non-heme iron, pair it with foods high in vitamin C, like oranges and strawberries, to increase your body’s uptake.
It doesn’t matter what the weather is in your part of the country, these six vegetables are always available for to take a Real Bite out of so pick them up them now and think SPRING!
Since the groundhog saw his shadow, we are in for at least six more weeks of winter (and it feels like it in many parts of the country). Luckily, you can start thinking spring now with these six “spring” vegetables. Although they are at their best during the spring months, you can find them today in the produce section of your favorite supermarket. So why not let your taste buds think spring has sprung and add one these to your next meal.
The Real Bite Nutrition Blog is written by Joanne Perez who is a registered dietitian, runner, newbie cyclist, beach lover, avid reader, Army Vet RD, wanna be chef, wife & mom. She doesn't believe in diets & thinks life is too short to be anything but healthy & happy at any weight.
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This blog is written to provide information and education. Although I am a RDN and LD, the information provided in my blog is not intended to be medical nutrition therapy. Please contact me, another RD or your primary healthcare provider before making any significant diet changes.