The Sprig is Up! Long regarded as a ho-hum herb, parsley is actually a staple in many cuisines.
- Parsley’s distinctive flavor comes from menthatriene, a volatile oil. Other volatile oils in the herb, especially myristicin, are known cancer fighters and have been shown in studies to prevent tumor formation
- The antioxidant properties of parsley’s flavonoids, vitamin C (also
a powerful anti-inflammatory), and pro–vitamin A carotenoids help your body ward off many chronic diseases.
- Rich in chlorophyll, parsley is a handy breath freshener. Great for toning down garlic or onion breath.
- A mild diuretic, parsley supports the body’s detoxification systems and may help ward off kidney and bladder problems.
- Parsley provides folic acid, an important B vitamin that supports cardiovascular health and helps prevent colon and cervical cancers.
Find more information about parsley including some delicious recipes here.
One of the first signs that winter is over, asparagus is bursting with powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant nutrients.
- Recent research has shown that asparagus contains saponins, phytonutrients that fight inflammation and chronic diseases such as cancer. They also help with blood pressure and blood-sugar regulation.
- Asparagus is also rich in glutathione, vitamin C, beta-carotene, vitamin E and several flavonoids that make it an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant powerhouse.
- Inulin, a prebiotic, is found in asparagus (as well as in chicory root, Jerusalem artichoke and other foods). It helps nourish probiotic (good) bacteria in the large intestine that improves nutrient absorption and balances biochemistry while lowering the risk of allergies and many chronic diseases. Because asparagus is also high in fiber, it’s excellent for digestive health.
- High amounts of B vitamins in asparagus help lower blood levels of the amino acid homocysteine and contribute to heart health.
Celebrate the Delicate Side of Cabbage this St. Patrick’s Day.
- One cup of raw, shredded savoy cabbage provides 60 percent of your daily recommended allowance of vitamin K, which is important for healthy blood coagulation and maintaining bone mass. It’s also loaded with vitamin C, phytonutrients and fiber.
- When cooked, savoy’s vitamin K disappears. But steaming or lightly boiling savoy makes other vitamins — especially vitamins C and A — more accessible during the digestion process.
- Raw, shredded napa cabbage offers plenty of vitamin C, plus some vitamin A and calcium. The vegetable’s folate, manganese, copper and iron are not readily accessible to the body when it’s raw.
- When steamed or lightly boiled, though, a cup of napa cabbage delivers 12 percent of your RDA of folate, as well as a healthy mix of manganese, vitamins A and C, copper, and iron.
- The strong flavor of cabbage comes from its glucosinolates, which contain sulfur and nitrogen. Glucosinolates and isothiocyanates are phytochemicals in cabbage that help ward off cancer. By signaling the genes to increase production of certain enzymes, cabbage’s phytonutrients also help optimize the body’s detoxifying abilities.
- Raw cabbage juice has been shown to be effective in treating peptic ulcers.
Chocolate-Blueberry Goodness Smoothie
- 1 banana
- 1/2-1 cup milk of your choice (almond, dairy, etc.)
- 1/4 cup almond or peanut butter
- 2 tbs. unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup frozen wild blueberries
- 1/2 cup fresh or frozen spinach
- 1 tsp. chia seeds
Blend all the ingredients together until smooth. (NOTE: Substitute the spinach for half of an avocado for a creamier alternative.)
Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with Experience Life staff’s favorite green treats! More recipes here.
- Purée chickpeas with olive oil, fresh garlic, tahini (sesame seed paste) and lemon juice to make hummus, which you can serve with pita, vegetables or as a sandwich spread to accompany meats, vegetables or fish.
- For a crunchy, flavorful snack, season chickpeas with olive oil, salt and pepper, toss with rosemary and balsamic vinegar, then roast at 200 degrees F for 45 minutes. Stir, then roast for another 15 minutes.
- Add chickpeas to vegetable soups to enhance flavor and protein content.
- Sauté chickpeas in olive oil with garlic, then combine with spinach, tomatoes, feta and quinoa pasta for a fast, delicious and nutritionally balanced meal.
- Chickpea (garbanzo) flour makes a flavorful, light and nutritious whole-grain alternative to wheat flour in pancakes, fritters, crackers and polenta.