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Great Greens

Feb 06, 14 Great Greens

As I have written about before, I walk or jog just about every day. Occasionally, I do take some time off to let my body recuperate or just because I need it, but I am diligent and dedicated to my exercise. I also do yoga at least three times a week. Exercising is a part of my life. In addition, something I do is try to eat healthy foods. Active.com recently published an article about healthy foods to incorporate into one’s diet. The focus of the Active.com article was on eating during the runner’s offseason, but I think these foods are good for all of us all year around, so I thought I’d write about them.

Kale

Kale is one of the superfoods—foods that provide such incredible health benefits that we all should incorporate them. Kale is a leafy green that is stock full of vitamins and minerals, tastes delicious, and can be eaten in many ways. Some people sauté kale while others put it in soups. One can also eat it raw in a salad or bake it to make a chip. Kale is delicious, true, but the real beauty in this food is it is stock full of iron, vitamins A, C, Bs, calcium, fiber, and antioxidants. Oh, and it’s low calorie.

Avocados

Avocados are nutrient rich. With over 20 vitamins and minerals, fiber, and monounsaturated fatty acids (the good fats), these are perfect to add to any salad, sandwich, or meal otherwise. Plus, the rich, creamy taste makes it a perfect addition to our diet.

Edamame

According to Active.com, “Edamame are soybeans in the pods that are picked before they mature. Appearing often as an appetizer in Japanese restaurants, they can be found in just about every frozen food aisle. They’re easy to cook, mild flavored, and are packed with vitamins, minerals, fiber, essential fatty acids and protein. You can also find them freeze dried for grab-and-go snacking. Mix edamame with chickpeas when making hummus for a healthy, protein-rich snack.”

Green Tea

Full of antioxidants, green tea has long been touted as a good addition to any day. Plus, it has L-theanine, the amino acid that may help us stay calm and focused. Oh, and it still has caffeine for those who drink coffee or tea for that.

Spinach

Like kale, spinach is a delicious, healthy superfood full of nutrients, but not full of calories. Though it boasts nutrients like fiber, vitamins, minerals, and protein, it only has seven calories per cup. Healthy, light, and tasty—eat spinach in a surfeit of ways and dishes to have all its benefits.

Broccoli

Just what does broccoli have to offer? Well, first take vitamins K, C, A, and Bs, then add folate, fiber, and potassium, and you have a food that adds much to a diet without the side effects of too many calories or fats. Raw or cooked, broccoli is a perfect addition to our daily eating habits.

Kiwis

Active.com put it simply: “This small fruit is filled with vitamins A, C and E and has as much potassium as a banana. Kiwi seeds contain alpha linoleic acid, which is an omega-3 fatty acid that repairs tissues and helps fight inflammation.” Sweet yet healthy, now that’s a food we all want.

Of course, there are other healthy foods, but this is a pretty great list for those of us thinking about our diet, weight, or health otherwise. It seems the great green is the theme of healthy eating.

Image Credit: Thinkstock

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About 

Rayshell E. Clapper is an Associate Professor of English at a rural college in Oklahoma where she teaches Creative Writing, Literature, and Composition classes. She has presented her original fiction and non-fiction at several conferences and events including: Scissortail Creative Writing Festival, Howlers and Yawpers Creativity Symposium, Southwest/Texas Pop Culture Association/American Culture Association Regional Conference, and Pop Culture Association/American Culture Association National Conference. Her publications include Cybersoleil Journal, Sugar Mule Literary Magazine, Red Dirt Anthology, Originals, and Oklahoma English Journal. Beyond her written works, she successfully created a writer's group in rural Oklahoma to support burgeoning writers. The written word is her passion, and all she experiences inspires that passion. She hopes to help inspire others through her words.

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