Fall is here and along with it, a number of delicious, nutritious, seasonal foods that are super healthy. We want to promote healthy living this fall. Maybe some of these are on your seasonal rotation, but we hope that you will be adventurous enough to try those that are not. So take out your grocery shopping list and make plans to expand your palate a bit.
Pumpkins: while we associate these with Halloween and jack-o’-lanterns, pumpkins are low in calories packed with fiber and an excellent source of vitamins and minerals. Cook them like squash, seasoning with a bit of olive oil, butter, salt and pepper. Pumpkin has just 7g of carbs per 100 grams (roughly one cup). Pumpkin contains less sugar and starch than corn and potatoes, so makes a decent substitute during the fall.
Apples: Apples are a perfect addition to your fall diet, because they are low in sodium, rich in fiber, and full of flavor. Not only this, but they are easy to take with you, whether running errands, going to work or school, or even a walk on the beach. Some varieties are higher in sugar than others, but generally speaking, an average Apple has about 14% of your daily vitamin C, only 95 cal, and 25 g of carbs, but those cards are different than the ones you find in junk food, because about 4 1/2 g are fiber, which slows down your carbohydrate absorption and digestion so that your blood sugar does not spike as quickly.
Sweet potatoes: sweet potatoes have a very low position on the glycemic scale which makes them slower to digest, giving you a feeling of fullness. Moreover, they are packed with antioxidants like carotenoids. However, they aren’t exactly low-carb, but they do have a lower carb content than regular potatoes. Bake them as you would a potato, or, cut them into strips, splash them with a bit of olive oil, and bake them like french fries. A 1/2 cup is less than 100 calories, 20g of carbs, and 475mg of potassium.
Pork: a famous chef once suggested that people need to stop ordering chicken every time they eat at a restaurant, because chefs are bored with it and it is dull and bland. So here is your chance, to break the mold…consider incorporating some pork into your diet as a source of lean protein, which will help you the muscle that you have gained through exercise.
Bok Choy: it used to be common only in Chinese grocery stores, but bok choy is mainstream now. It is filled with fiber and potassium, not to mention vitamin A and beta carotene. It is easy to cook and contains only 20 calories per cup. Season it with garlic and ginger, with a dash of soy sauce and sesame oil for a wonderful treat. Try it, you’ll love it.
Bay Leaf: one of the biggest problems people have losing weight and staying healthy is due to using far too much salt in their diet. Consider exploring the world of spices, such as bay leaves, which add dimension to soups, stews, and sauces without needing to rely on salt as much. They give everything a warm, savory, fall flavor. There are lots of other spices to explore during the fall, and one of our personal favorites is a mix known as herbs de Provence, which is a mix of herbs commonly found in French foods. Many grocery scores carry it, so give it a try.
Brussels Sprouts: really, were not getting, brussels sprouts are delicious – just try cutting them in half, coating them with a bit of olive oil, dash of salt and pepper, and some fresh garlic, and pop them into your oven until they achieve a bit of brown coloring and are soft, and you will never say a bad word about brussel sprouts again. They also pack a half gram of protein per sprout!
We hope that this short list gives you some inspiration for exploring all the wonderful flavors and foods of fall. There are also lots of wonderful root vegetables in addition, which can be mixed with things like leaks, parsnips, carrots, and onions, and are the perfect side to accompany any meat dish, or to put in a hearty soup or stew. Plus, when cooking, they’ll make your kitchen smell like a perfect fall day, full of happy memories and healthy meals. If you found this post interesting, please share it with your friends on Facebook.