Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Green Power!

A bonus post today! Why? Because it's Spring and I was extra uplifted by seeing so many people buying dark leafy greens today at my local produce destination. Now, the place I go for all my fruits and veggies is very small, accepts cash only, and has one little old-fashioned cash register. People stand in line for an average of half an hour to get their yummy produce - but they are willing to do so because everything is non-spray, as local as possible, super fresh, and amazingly delicious! There's also a fun, lively atmosphere that keeps things interesting while you're standing patiently in line. 

Today, I was especially impressed by all the green things in people's baskets - kale, spinach, Swiss chard, parsley, basil, lettuce...it was all so beautiful :) These greens represent the fresh growth of this season. What makes it extra special is that Springtime is when our livers are most active. The body naturally wants to cleanse and rejuvenate after the Winter, and one of the best ways of helping it along is by consuming these wonderful dark leafy greens. Not only are they bursting with nutrients, but the bitter flavour of the greens stimulates and supports the liver in the detoxification process. 

Some other seasonal foods that help with liver function include asparagus, beets, dandelion greens, artichokes, and any bitter greens. Some other foods that make our livers nice and healthy include lemons, broccoli, cabbage, onions, garlic, nuts, seeds, turmeric, papaya, and avocado. Some people, especially those with a sluggish liver and/or underactive stomach, do well by drinking lemon water first thing in the morning. Just take some warm, pure water and squeeze some fresh lemon juice into it - it helps you wake up too :) 

And now, here is a terrific web site that just might require bookmarking as it is so full of fabulous, reliable, and up to date information - World's Healthiest Foods. Enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. I like the smell of kale but not exactly crazy abouts its taste. I know that it is one of the magic green and wish I could enjoy it more, particularly in soups. I googled kale soup and the most common and well reviewed recipes either did not look too healthy to me, or were too healthy, almost boring, for example:

    Restaurant-Style Zuppa Toscana
    1 (16 ounce) package smoked sausage
    2 potatoes, cut into 1/4-inch slices
    3/4 cup chopped onion
    6 slices bacon
    1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
    2 cups kale - washed, dried, and shredded
    2 tablespoons chicken soup base
    1 quart water
    1/3 cup heavy whipping cream

    Bean Soup With Kale
    1 tablespoon olive oil or canola oil
    8 large garlic cloves, crushed or minced
    1 medium yellow onion, chopped
    4 cups chopped raw kale
    4 cups low-fat, low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
    2 (15 ounce) cans white beans, such as cannellini or navy, undrained
    4 plum tomatoes, chopped
    2 teaspoons dried Italian herb seasoning
    Salt and pepper to taste
    1 cup chopped parsley

    Is there a middle ground? I think a complaint that healthy food is sometimes boring is a common and not always educated complaint, but perhaps my example illustrates how this perception comes about.