Processed food says it wants to be your friend. But it’s full of additives and artificial ingredients – not the kind of thing you want in a friend. Or in your food.
On the other hand, our vegetable friends offer the most nutrients and fiber for the fewest calories. One serving of broccoli offers heaping helpfuls of vitamins C and K, calcium, lutein, even protein, all for 30 calories. Yet less than 10 percent of Americans eat their recommended daily servings of fruits and vegetables.
“I can’t eat a plate of plain broccoli,” people tell me, looking pained. I can, and do, but I’m unusual. Vegetables don’t have to be the solo stars of your dinner. They’re delicious, but they’re not divas. Vegetables are eager to make friends and get along well with other ingredients.
Think of beans, whole grains and pasta as blank canvases that deserve a produce palette. Adding vegetables not only enriches them with nutrients and fiber but also with flavor, texture and color. Why eat a plain bowl of rice when you can enjoy it tossed with a confetti of sauteed peppers, onions and mushrooms? Add a handful or two of spinach to hot spaghetti. Give it a toss and the greens will wilt happily into the noodles.
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