If there were ever a season to increase your vegetable intake, it would be spring. With summer around the corner, what better time to add extra vitamins and nutrients to your regular diet so you can look and feel your best while relaxing in the sun?
An essential component of a healthy diet due to their low-calorie content and high concentrations of vitamins and nutrients, vegetables are celebrated by nutrition experts and dietitians everywhere. They can be credited with everything from boosting your hydration to improving your cardiovascular health to powering your immune system with antioxidants.
Eating your vegetables may seem straightforward, but it can be hard to know which of the countless choices in the produce section at your local market will help you meet your health goals most efficiently. Luckily, each of these vegetables tastes freshest in spring and number among the healthiest options!
A spring favorite that features in delicious recipes from soup to risotto primavera, just one cup of asparagus contains almost half of your recommended daily vitamin K intake. Vitamin K prevents blood clots and strengthens your bones. Coming in at just 27 calories per serving, asparagus is an excellent choice for spring.
This veggie tray staple shines brightest in springtime and can be consumed raw, in salads, or cooked in a stir-fry. Another excellent source of vitamin K, broccoli also boasts high levels of vitamin C, which will help keep you healthy all season long!
Featured in everything from spinach artichoke dip to Mediterranean fish dishes, artichokes are bursting with folate, which regulates cell function, in addition to vitamins C and K. An added benefit: one cup of artichokes provides 9% of your recommended daily protein intake.
Carrots have a reputation for helping your eyesight due to their beta-carotene content, and they are overflowing with vitamin A, which strengthens the health of your teeth, bones, and skin. They also contain vitamin B6, which supports your brain and helps your body process proteins.
Peas make a fabulous side dish and can add a pop of both color and nutrition to your favorite rice or pasta recipe. They have incredible nutritional value at a mere 117 calories per cup, including significant counts of fiber, copper, manganese, vitamin K, vitamin C, and thiamin.
Sometimes referred to as green onions or spring onions, scallions enhance many spring recipes and can be used as a nutrient-rich garnish or as a salad dressing component. Another contestant in the vitamin K content, scallions are a spring staple.
A necessity for salad and green smoothie lovers, spinach is extremely low in calories coming in at just 7 calories per cup of raw greens. It’s an excellent source of both vitamin A and folate which are strong supporters of liver function. If you want glowing skin, add some spinach to your meals.
A popular choice in soups, Swiss chard is a lesser-known green. It provides small amounts of many essential vitamins, including potassium, magnesium, and copper, alongside its astonishing vitamin K count. If you want to switch up your greens routine, try Swiss chard.
For a fibrous pop of color and vitamin C, reach for radishes. These crunchy root vegetables enhance salads and are a great snack on their own. Rich in potassium and copper, radishes will help you feel your best this spring.
Celebrated for its role in the classic strawberry rhubarb pie, rhubarb’s crunchy tartness makes it an excellent spring dessert vegetable. It will add significant fiber, calcium, potassium, and vitamin C to your favorite pastries and jams, proving that dessert can be nutritious too!