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We’ve all been told over and over again “eat your veggies!” I’m sure at this point in your life you know how good veggies are for you. You know you should be eating them (and most likely be eating more of them than you already are). But let’s face it… sometimes it can be hard to get those veggies in. So rather than me going on and on about why you should eat more veggies I thought we’d go through which veggies are going to be giving you the most bang for your buck.

So when you go to eat your veggies for the day – try to eat some veggies from this awesome powerhouse list:

20 Veggies You Should Eat Often (+ Yummy Recipes to Try!)

1. Beets

These red beauties are packed with many health benefits. Beets have been shown to help lower blood pressure, fight inflammation, and boost stamina. Along with all that beets are also filled with fiber, immune-boosting vitamin C, potassium, and manganese. All this helps promote a healthy nervous system; increases muscle function; and strengthens bones, livers, kidneys, and the pancreas. (And that’s not all!) Beets also have those powerful phytonutrients (which is what gives it that deep red color) that have been shown to help reduce risk of cancer.  

Take a look at these recipes that feature this powerhouse veggie:

Roasted Beets with Balsamic Glaze

Whole Wheat Blueberry Beef Muffins

2. Collard Greens

Looking for a wide range of health benefits from a single food source? Look no further than collard greens. Not only are they filled with protein and fiber, but collard greens contain a huge amount of vitamin K (like one cup of boiled collard greens gives you well over 100 percent of the daily recommended intake of vitamin K – win!). Collard greens are a cruciferous vegetable (which are known for anti-cancer properties) so including more of them in your diet will reduce your risk of cancer.

Plus add in the fact that collard greens have such a high amount of vitamin A (which helps bring health to your skin and hair) and that they contain cholines (which helps with sleep and mood) and you really have a winner.

Here are some a couple of our favorite recipes that use collard greens:

Creamed Collard Greens

Shredded Collard Green Salad with Roasted Sweet Potatoes and Cashews

3. Pumpkin

Yes to all things pumpkin! Full of fiber, potassium, and vitamin C – pumpkin is a great way to help support you heart and digestive health.

Check these pumpkin recipes out:

Mini Cranberry Pumpkin Muffins

Cheesy Pumpkin Lentil Pot Pies

4. Watercress

Watercress, like collard greens, is a cruciferous vegetable (so you get all that awesome cancer fighting goodness). It also contains a lot of vitamin K (which makes those bones healthy and strong). Watercress has the antioxidant alpha-lipoic acid which actually helps lower glucose levels and helps in treating diabetes.

Here are some great recipes with watercress:

Skirt Steak with Shallots and Sautéed Watercress

Watercress Salad with Sesame-Garlic Dressing

5. Asparagus

This veggie is packed full of vitamins including vitamin A, C, E, K, and B6. If that isn’t enough for you then how about the fact that asparagus can help you lose weight? Low in calories but high in insoluble fiber, which will help you feel full longer. Asparagus also contains high levels of the amino acid asparagine which helps flush fluid and salt from your body (which can actually help prevent UTI’s). And along those lines asparagus can also help your digestive health and prevent bloating!

You can’t go wrong with asparagus – especially in these recipes:

Chicken Asparagus Carbonara

Oven-Roasted Asparagus

6. Brussels Sprout

These beauties are full of Vitamin C which is essential for growth and developments. They are also packed with fiber which will keep that digestive system working normally.

Some yummy recipes to try:

Savory Brussels Sprouts with Pine Nuts

One-Pan Paprika Chicken Thighs with Brussels Sprouts

7. Swiss Chard

Want help lower your blood pressure, managing diabetes, and reducing cancer risk? Be sure to throw some swiss chard into your diet. It has massive amounts of vitamin K. In fact in just one cup of raw swiss chard you will get more the 300% of your daily need for vitamin K. Talk about a great way to fight osteoporosis! Swiss chard has also been shown to improve muscle oxygenation during exercise so if you are looking to better your athletic performance then look no further than swiss chard

Some of our favorite swiss chard recipes are:

Paleo Garlicky Swiss Chard

Sauteed Swiss Chard with Blood Orange Dress

8. Red Bell Pepper

While all bell peppers have a lot of nutrient value, the red variety have the highest amount of Vitamin C. Red bell peppers are also full of awesome nutrients with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits.

Bring on all the red peppers!

Chicken Fajitas

Paleo Stuffed Peppers

9. Spinach

Spinach has a long-standing history for being known as a nutrition powerhouse. I mean, think about Popeye. But with its low fat and cholesterol content, and high protein, fiber, calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium content combined with loads of vitamin A, C, E, K and B6, it’s no wonder this veggie has such a good reputation.

Here are some great spinach recipes to try out:

Spinach Lentil Salad with Tomatoes

Chicken & Spinach Soup with Fresh Pesto

10. Cauliflower

Another great source of vitamin C – in fact cauliflower actually contains 77 percent of your recommended daily value. Add in the good source of vitamin K, protein, fiber, and folate and you have a real winner of a veggie!

Check this recipes out:

Spicy Whole Roasted Cauliflower

Mediterranean Cauliflower Pizza

11. Kale

Kale is another popular veggie these days and with good reason! Depending on who you ask Kale is king when it comes to healthy leafy green veggies. With vitamins A, K, C, B6, manganese, calcium, copper, potassium, magnesium you can see why that’s believed. Add in the fact that kale is a powerful antioxidant and can lower risk of heart disease and you really will get a lot of bang for your buck with this powerhouse veggie.

Here are just a few of our favorite kale recipes:

Kale and Mushroom Frittata

Kale Quinoa Patties

12. Peas

Who are pea fans out there? My littles love peas and I couldn’t be happier about it with their big amounts of vitamin K, B6, B1, manganese, and fiber content. I also love peas because they help give energy and a strong immune system. Who doesn’t want more energy and a healthy immune system?

Here are some of my favorite recipes that use peas:

Split Pea Soup

Lemon Couscous with Peas and Carrots

13. Broccoli

Need a great source of fiber? Then broccoli is the veggie for you. Broccoli also has some great amounts of omega-3 fatty acids which help reduce risks of heart disease, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol.

Looking for good broccoli recipes? Try these:

Garlic Roasted Broccoli

Comforting Creamy Broccoli Soup

14. Cabbage

Cabbage is another great cruciferous vegetable which means it can help protect you from harmful effects of radiation therapy as well as help with cancer prevention. Add in it’s high vitamin K and vitamin C content and you have a veggie that also helps with your heart and immune system!

We love these cabbage recipes:

Vegetarian Stuffed Cabbage

Cabbage Salsa

15. Carrots

One of the best things that carrots is great for is helping with improving your eyes! Filled with beta-carotene and Vitamin A carrots have been shown to help with cataracts and other degeneration in the eyes. Along with healthy eyes carrots will also help promote healthier skin!

You’ll have no problem getting carrots in your diet with these two recipes:

Parmesan Herb Carrot Fries

Roasted Carrot and Avocado Salad

16. Onions

Onions are super high in fiber which helps prevents multiple types of cancer (colon, prostate, stomach and more). Onions also are huge in helping with sleep and your mood by helping prevent excess of homocysteine (which interferes with producing serotonin and dopamine) from forming in the body.

You’ll love these recipes that highlight onions:

Healthy Onion Rings

Hearty Paleo French Onion Soup

17. Cucumbers

Cucumbers are a great veggie for brain health! These veggies include fisetin which plays a very important role in improving memory and helping protect your nerve cells from decline. Plus cucumbers have been shown to help freshen your breath and manage stress! Sounds like a winner to me.

Try out these delicious cucumber recipes:

Hummus in Cucumber Boats

Persian Cucumber & Tomato Salad

18. Zucchini

Zucchinis are awesome for the heart and weight loss low in calories and high in potassium! Also with its high source of vitamin C, zucchini guards against asthma and helps strengthen teeth and bones.

Find the recipes we love most that use zucchini:

Healthy Zucchini Bread

Crunchy Zucchini Rounds with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Goat Cheese

19. Jicama

Jicama is filled with health boosting vitamins and minerals but especially vitamin C which is great for boosting the immune system! With its low sodium, hardly any fat content this veggie is also great at supporting heart health and maintain healthy weight.

Here are some great jicama recipes you’ll want to try:

Tangy Jicama Slaw

Root Vegetable Bake

20. Tomatoes

Okay, okay technically tomatoes are a fruit, but let’s be honest, it’s taste pairs perfectly with our vegetable garden we have going on. Regardless, it’s something you should keep in your diet as it is filled with awesome nutrients that help with constipation, eye health, heart health, blood pressure, and more!

Here are some of our most favorite tomato recipes:

Tomato Galette

Sundried Tomato, Spinach, and Cheese Stuffed Chicken

20 Powerhouse Vegetables You Should Be Eating & Why

Sources:

http://www.webmd.com/diet/ss/slideshow-vegetarian-diet

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/06/23/top-fruits-vegetables.aspx

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/277957.php

 

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