How to Get Your Greens On

How to Get Your Green on If You Don’t Like Salad

Because my people didn’t wander the desert for 40 years so I could be tortured eating bitter herbs (Passover jokes, y’all). I understand not everyone loves to dive into a kale salad on the reg. In fact, losers who eat plain raw vegetables are hardly absorbing ANY of the Vitamin A (or any fat-soluble vitamin, for that matter) from those colorful flora because Vitamin A requires fat to be processed in your body. Hence, we add beautiful things like all-natural, homemade dressings and seasoning to our salads. We would never, ever BUY dressing, right? RIGHT?? Commercially prepared dressings contain icky additives, loads of fillers, salt, bad fats, and most deviously… sugars. Some salad dressings have as much sugar as a serving of ice cream. (Shudder). You’re always better off making your own.

Choose a heart-healthy oil base:

  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Avocado oil

Add an acid:

  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Rice wine vinegar
  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Any vinegar!!

Add fun flavors:

  • Diced tomatoes
  • Avocado
  • Onions
  • Diced nuts/seeds
  • Raspberries
  • Garlic cloves
  • Mustards (all kinds)
  • Plain Greek yogurt (2%)
  • Sriracha

Add seasoning (non-salt)

  • Black pepper
  • Rosemary
  • Dill
  • Thyme
  • Turmeric
  • Ginger root
  • Cinnamon
  • Oregano
  • Basil
  • Cayenne

Endless algorithms to dress up your salad in your love!

Hark! I know they are veggie haters out there. Wearing sunglasses that block out chlorophyll, are you? Sigh. Ok. I can work with this.

It’s ALWAYS better to eat a vegetable in its unadultered state. However, it’s better to have veggie juiced and spent money/lost a bit of fiber than to never have veggied at all. If you simply refuse to consume anything green, there are options. One of which being, I will personally come to your house and force feed you zucchini lasagna and beet brownies, but that is neither here nor there.

When you juice a vegetable (or a fruit), you are sacrificing many of the phytochemicals (chemical compounds found in place with all sorts of magical beautiful health benefits) found in the skins of produce. Even if you are preserving the skin, you’re often degrading the precious fibers found in intact veggies, and that makes me sad. As previously noted, raw vegetables taste like, er, the dirt in which they grew up. So it’s almost mandatory to add something to sweeten them, which adds sugar (ugh, again, some juices contain as much sugar as a soda!) and therefore calories that we wouldn’t even need if you could just appreciate a cucumber for WHO SHE IS. Baby, she was born this way.

Your body also doesn’t register fullness from liquids as well as it does from solids. SO, you could easily chug 16 ounces of veggie juice laden with sugars, and be none the fuller, but you would be quite satiated if you ate a bunch of carrots. There’s no evidence that drinking juice is any “better” for you than eating veggies in the raw. Even if you can juice 27 heads of swiss chard into a single bottle, that doesn’t amplify any beneficial nutrient effect. In fact, anything that’s water soluble (like many vitamins in vegetables) you will likely pee out (that’s very expensive pee from a 16 dollar juice, eh?). And what did we just say about needing some fat in there to help you absorb those fat-soluble nutrients? There are even upper tolerable limits set by the NIH/IOM (National Institute of Health/Institute of Medicine) for every nutrient and it’s become terrifyingly easy to exceed safe limits for many vitamins/minerals with the public’s obsession with juicing. If you are going to opt for a juice/smoothie, here are some guidelines:

  1. Avoid any fruit juices. Choose fruit puree instead.
  2. Don’t add agave, honey, molasses, etc. Try raw stevia.
  3. Try to limit your smoothie/juice to two servings of vegetables at a time (that’s about 1 cup of leafy greens or chopped veggies)
  4. For flavor, add ginger, turmeric, cinnamon, mint, basil or other spices
  5. Use whole vegetables/fruits when possible instead of their juice
  6. Choose unsweetened milk alternatives, kefir, plain yogurt, or organic raw nut butters/nuts as a fat source; remember; you must have fat with your veggies!

Essentially Yours,
Monica

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