- I have been a teacher of fitness and health for thirty years. In 1989 I was certified for personal training with the National Acadamy of Sports Medicine. I had a gym in Santa Barbara for eight years. Co-owned and created a spinning bike company which manufactured bikes for five years. Also I have worked with nutrition companies for twenty years. Along with many wonderful non famous people I have trained many celebrities, and members of the Royal Family. My own athletic past consists of long distance running, long distance cycling, cross country skiing, down hill skiing, rollerblading, hiking, sand running, track work, and weight training. I have authored two fitness columns in local papers, and have been writing this blog since January 2010.
Monday, October 11, 2010
Vegetables and Their Nutritional Value
Here I go again talking to you of the importance of eating your vegetables. I can't help myself....eating vegetables will help to keep you healthy and lean, it is one of the most important foods that we need for a healthy body and mind.
Cruciferous vegetables are the ones that help to fight cancer and help to build and protect your immune system. They are filled with vitamin C and K, potassium, folic acid, iron, calcium, and fiber. Some of the cruciferous vegetables include, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, and cabbage. You can eat these raw, which is where you will receive more of the nutrient value, or lightly steamed.
Dark green leafy vegetables are high in iron, potassium, calcium, magnesium, carotinoids, and vitamins B, C, E, and K. Some of the choices for these are Kale, spinach, collard greens, parsley, turnip greens, and Swiss chard. You will be sure to get your allotment of vitamins and minerals eating a diet that includes these vegetables.
I have always heard that carrots will help with your eyesight. This is true. Carrots are high in carotinoid's and vitamin A. They are also a source for vitamins B, C, and K. Carrots give you fiber, potassium, magnesium, and folate, all are essential for good health.
Tomatoes are high in vitamin C, and lycopene. Lycopene is a carotinoid, and carotinoids act as an antioxidant in the body. Remember that antioxidants are the soldiers that work on ridding our bodies of free radicals that disease and age us. To think that vegetables help to slow down our aging and keep us from getting sick....what a deal!
Asparagus is another great vegetable which gives us potassium, fiber, vitamins A, C, K, and B complex, especially vitamin B6 and folic acid. Our B vitamins get depleted with stress, so this is a great way to give the body back what it needs. Asparagus can help us to lose weight, reduce inflammation, and help us with depression.
Bell peppers, sweet potatoes, squash, green beans, and peas, are also full of healthy nutrients, fiber and all of the things that help to keep us disease free and energized. Eating all vegetables raw or lightly steamed is recommended for keeping the nutrient value intact. If you cook them to death, you will not be getting the vitamins and minerals that you are looking for. The less they are cooked, the better.
Thank you for indulging me in another vegetable blog! Now go and make yourself a big salad packed full of raw vegies! Enjoy!