It’s just after the most wonderful time of the year, and that means that millions of Americans will recommit to a healthy lifestyle at the beginning of 2015. If you’re one of them, kudos! While we love foods that are decadent and rich, a healthy and nutritious diet is the key to getting and staying healthy.
To help jump start your year of health, we’ve put together a list of our favorite healthy green foods. These are not only loaded with health benefits, but they are easy to find and trendy for 2015. Many of them are perfect for your green morning smoothie or as a side dish for dinner.
This super food has been popular for several years now. As it becomes more and more common to see both in home kitchens and in restaurants, there’s no reason why it shouldn’t be a staple in your vegetable crisper at all times. Kale is perfect in your morning smoothie, drizzled with extra virgin olive oil and baked, or steamed with garlic and onion to eat as a side dish at dinner (it’s great with fish or chicken!)
Another super food long touted for its nutritional value, avocado is a versatile food that you should be keeping handy in 2015. Avocados are extremely versatile and can be added to everything from salads and sandwiches to omelets and dips. Avocados are also a good source of unsaturated fat.
If kale is the green of the last 5 years, arugula is the green of the next 5 years. Loaded with health benefits including everything from vitamin A, C, K, and folic acid, arugula is a great addition to almost anything you’re having for dinner. While it’s a frequent ingredient in salads, arugula is also delicious steamed or sauteed and added to pastas, pizzas, or quiches.
4. Green Curry
While it’s probably not the best addition to your morning smoothie, green curry is a trendy, delicious, and healthy ingredient to have stocked in your kitchen. Spices are a great way to boost your metabolism and add flavor to food without adding sodium or sugar. Green curry is usually made with coconut milk, which is a healthy source of fat. Make your own curry from scratch or head to your local Asian supermarket and pick up green curry paste. Just add coconut milk and your favorite vegetables, then sprinkle with crushed peanuts, Thai chili pepper, and fresh lime.
5. Bok Choy
Bok choy is a traditional Asian vegetable with almost unbelievable benefits for your health. While bok choy is still not exploding in popularity in the US, we suspect it’s on its way as Asian fusion cuisine becomes more and more popular. Bok choy is a carotenoid, which is a dietary antioxidant believed to lower your risk of cancer. On top of that, just one cup of shredded bok choy contains half of your daily requirement for vitamins A, C, and K. Bok choy also helps to lower blood pressure.
Convinced now? Get some bok choy at your local health food store or at an Asian supermarket near you. Bok choy is great steamed or sauteed and can be flavored with virtually anything you like. It’s also great in soups and stews.
Stock your refrigerator with these 5 greens and you’re on your way to a healthier you in 2015!