Everyone knows the importance of eating the rainbow (no, Skittles don’t count!) every day, but St. Patrick’s Day brings one particular color to mind. Dark green vegetables have more nutritional value per calorie than any other food group. They’re a significant source of vitamins A, C, E, K, and B, as well as the minerals calcium, magnesium, iron, and potassium. They have lots of fiber to keep you full, and almost no fat or carbs.
Three-quarters of Americans don’t eat the recommended three servings of vegetables a day– which is a shame, as vegetables are one of the biggest building blocks to reaching one’s optimal health. They contain an array of antioxidants and phytochemicals, which can reduce inflammation, eliminate carcinogens, and main the integrity of your body’s DNA. Studies have shown that people with a larger vegetable intake have lower risks of stroke, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, Alzheimer’s, heart disease, certain cancers, and kidney stones. They’ve even shown higher scores on cognitive tests– veggies are better than just “brain food”, they’re “everything food”!
Now for St. Patrick’s Day dinner this year, try a nice big side dish of roasted green veggies– the crispy edges and a touch of salt come together to make these unstoppable. This is my lazy-night go-to recipe, as it only takes five minutes of prep and you can tweak it however you like! Brussel sprouts, asparagus, and broccoli are my favorite green veggies, but try mixing in some carrots and onions as well– or maybe add a new vegetable you’ve never tried before!
Crispy Roasted Vegetables
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit
2. Chop up whatever vegetables you’d like into bite-size pieces
3. Spread on cookie sheet, drizzle with olive oil and coarse salt to taste
4. Roast in the oven for 9-12 minutes– until you can stick a fork through the pieces easily