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Name That Green!

When it’s said that “variety is the spice of life,” greens are no exception! 

Plants “allow” humans and animals to eat ALL of their fruits, but only PART of their leaves, because plants need to have leaves for their own use – which is manufacturing chlorophyll. Yet, plants depend on moving creatures for pollination, fertilizing the soil, and helping eat the ripe fruit. For this reason, plants accumulate a lot of highly nutritious elements in their leaves, but mix these nourishing ingredients with either bitterness or very small amounts of alkaloids (poisons) – which is why animals are forced to rotate their menu. They eat a small amount of one thing, then move on to other plants. The body is only capable of detoxifying small amounts of a great many things, but it is much more difficult for the human system to get rid of a large amount of one type of poison. This is why it’s so important for us to learn to rotate the greens in our diet.

Simply eating “lots of salads” is not truly benefiting you if you’re using the same greens over and over.  

It’s important to alternate our variety of greens as much as possible. My hope is that our farmers will actually grow a larger variety of green leafy vegetables to increase our green intake. Many of the greens available in grocery stores are mostly bred from the dandelion and mustard families. Despite their names and appearances, cultivated greens have similar nutritional content. To truly meet our nutritional needs, it’s important we include greens from a number of totally different plant families into our daily diets. 

So, the next time you’re making a salad, consider adding a combination of 4 or 5 greens.  Consider adding a few of these:

Greens:   Arugula (rocket), Asparagus, Beet greens (tops), Bok choy, Celery, Chard, Collard greens, Escarole, Fresee lettuce, Goji leaves (wolfberry), Kale (3 types), Mache, Mitsuna, Mustard greens, Lettuce (all types red and green), Radicchio, Radish tops, Spinach, Romaine lettuce green and red leaf, Turnip greens, Wheatgrass

Herbs:  Basil, Cilantro, Lemon Balm, Mint, Parsley, Peppermint leaves, Spearmint

Ready to experiment a litte more the next time your shopping?  I hope so! If you have a great recipe you’d like me to share, send me an email! 

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