6 of the healthiest vegetables on a budget which will help you boost
your immune system and detoxify your system which will help you lose weight!
How many of us stick with the same ole’ vegetables day in and day out. Or when we talk about eating the healthiest vegetables it usually comes in the form of a salad or maybe sautéed spinach – then it stops there.
Or when asked this … “So what kind of vegetables do you eat?” and you answer “broccoli and lettuce” I can ensure you – you are such a NEWBIE when it comes to eating the greens.
Just today I asked someone if they ate their veggies and they said "Yes, of course!! I have spinach and arugula and greens....in my salad every day!"
But .... that's all the greens all.....day.....long. One salad.
With dinner. :-(
Many of us are unaware of the healthiest vegetables to choose from and unless we step out of the box we will quickly get bored and trade in these nutritional powerhouses for something different and tempting (like French fries) and then we miss the many benefits of these greens!!
Not only are these greens some of the super healthiest vegetables and full of phytonutrients, fiber, nutrient rich but they contain a specific phytonutrient called “glucosinolates”. These cruciferous vegetables listed below are the only veggies to contain glucosinolates – which are tremendous cancer fighters. These veggies also provide support for our immune system, inflammatory system, hormonal system, detoxification system and antioxidant system.
better yet…..the healthiest vegetables are NOT expensive!! Instead they are cheap, healthy food. One
head of cabbage is about .99 to $1.29 per pound and cabbage makes a ton of
servings!! Have you ever tried to eat 2
cups of steamed or sauteed veggies with lunch and dinner? If you have…..you know how full your stomach
will feel. If you haven’t tried it –
this is one of the best appetite suppresants out there that actually make you
feel full. One of the biggest money
makers out there is appetite suppressants….and usually what is in them is mega
doses of fiber. So why not eat the real
thing….get real nutritional benefits for a fraction of the cost!!
Healthiest Vegetable #1
Hail to Kale!!! Kale is a nutritional powerhouse but if you have never tried it you may think that there is no way you will like it. When I mention kale I usually get a facial expression of a scrunched up face in a bit of disgust. But don’t knock it until you try it!!
The easiest way to use kale is to use it in a smoothie. I like to use “baby kale” in my smoothie since it blends even better and has a milder flavor. Trust me….you won’t taste the green – it may look green but it won’t taste green. I usually add a banana to my smoothie which helps with the consistency, flavor and texture.
If you want to use kale in a salad – baby kale works great. The adult “curly” kale found in most grocery stores has a mild, sweet flavor but the leaves can be tough. If you use it in a salad, chop it up into small pieces so you are not chewing endlessly on a large chunk.
But don't limit kale to just smoothies and salads!! Take a look at the many options and ways to make kale.
Cheap, healthy food cost of kale is $1.40 per pound. Two pounds of uncooked kale = 2 ½ cups cooked leaves.
Healthy Vegetable #2
Arugula is another powerful vegetable which has a peppery taste to it and is a nice addition with other greens. You know when you eat a salad and it tastes …… green. Well arugula helps to add a bit of a snap to salads while being high in vitamins A, C and folate, as well as calcium, potassium and magnesium.
Most commonly, arugula is used in salads but when you know the Flavor Combos you will see the wide use of this peppery little green.
Cost - @ $2.14 for 10-12 oz. bag
Healthy Vegetable #3
Cabbage!! When I think of cabbage I think of what my mom made on St. Patrick’s Day – corned beef and cabbage. A wedge of cabbage boiled – plain, tasteless and BORING. But when I discovered that cabbage helped chronic constipation……I was on board since it is something I have suffered from for years!!! So I learned to make it yummy and tasty!!
Cabbage is super high in anti-oxidants, is a major cancer fighter and has powerful anti-inflammatory effects. To learn more about the benefits of cabbage go here.
I love to make cabbage because it makes so much and it is great leftover. It’s like a staple in my house so always have a healthy alternative available. Take a look at these ways you can make cabbage.
Cabbage is a major cheap, healthy food at a mere @ .47 cents per pound. One pound of cabbage makes at least 2 cups shredded, cooked cabbage. Most heads of cabbage are at least 2-3 lbs. which equates to 4-6 cups cooked cabbage.
If you know how to make it - you will LOVE it.
Healthy Vegetable #4
Bok Choy – another one of the healthiest vegetables high in vitamins C, A, and K, and excellent sources of calcium, magnesium, potassium, manganese, and iron as well as supplying all the beta-carotene needed in just 1 cup of bok choy makes the benefits endless.
But many people see it in the store and usually pass on by only to get a taste in some take-out Chinese food (which my then the benefits may be negated by what is in Chinese food).
Bok Choy can be used so many different ways. It can be steamed or it can be sautéed or added to a soup. I also like it roasted and it can be used in a salad. Options are endless!!
You may see 2 types of Bok Choy – the adult version and “baby” Bok Choy (which is my favorite). The baby bok choy is milder in flavor and I think it’s easier to prepare. But with either one – you must trim off the thick bottom stalk and remove any discolored leaves. With the adult bok choy – I like to cook the leaves separate from the stalk since the leaves will cook much faster. But with the Baby Bok Choy you can cook the whole thing.
So if you are newbie when it comes to bok choy and you want to try
it – start with something SUPER SIMPLE
and EASY like Roasted Bok Choy.
Healthy Vegetable #5
Spinach – what does everyone do with spinach? They add it to a salad or maybe a smoothie. Folks!! You are missing out on the many benefits of spinach and the many ways it can be used. Spinach is one of the most nutrient dense vegetables and provides powerful anti-oxidant benefits anti-inflammatory effects.
Spinach is also loaded with Vitamin K which helps protect bone density and prevents bones from breaking down.
Cost of spinach - $2.50 per 10 oz. bag or $3.99 per 10 oz. ORGANIC spinach. Spinach is one of the “dirty dozen” and it’s suggested that you buy organic – but if you can’t because it’s just too expensive than just get the regular.
So what do you do with spinach other than using it in a salad or smoothie? Take a look at some of these ideas.
Healthiest Food #6
Dandelion – my grandfather LOVED dandelion greens. In fact, many years ago he used to pick his own on the side of the Long Island Expressway!! I can’t say that is the “organic” way to go considering all the toxins in the air!!
I journeyed out and made some dandelion greens the other day and you know what…..they were good!! Dandelion greens have a mild, pleasant, slightly spicy flavor. Dandelion greens are a well known diuretic, cancer fighter and immune booster and very detoxyfiying. This definitely makes it one of the healthiest vegetables.
But what to do with these unusual little greens?
This is what I came up with my first time making them:
Dandelion Greens with White Beans