by Laurel Leicht for Life by DailyBurn
This time of year, when holiday treats and comfort food are the standard fare, it almost starts to feel like fruits and vegetables are nonexistent. The produce section at your grocery store is still packed with fresh options, of course, but the best ones to grab this time of year aren't necessarily your typical favorites. "Don't only go for produce that's specifically harvested in the spring, summer or fall, like berries and bell peppers," advises Sara Haas, RDN, spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. "Many fruits and vegetables peak during colder months and offer nutrients that are quite beneficial to your health." You'll also save money by choosing foods that are currently in season. Read on for our top picks of healthy winter produce, plus ways to cook and eat it to retain the most nutrients possible.
Many root veggies are in season in the winter, including parsnips and turnips. Turnips are a cruciferous vegetable, known for their high concentrations of vitamins, minerals and health-promoting carotenoids. They’re also great sources of fiber, folate, and vitamins C, E and K.
"Root vegetables are typically pretty hardy, so it's perhaps more of a challenge to destroy some of its nutritional benefits with cooking," says Haas. She recommends adding them to soups and stews. When the veggies break down and release nutrients, they'll be leached right into the cooking liquid, so you’ll still end up consuming them. Roasting them is another good option; toss them in olive oil first to help your body absorb their fat-soluble vitamins (like A, D, E and K). Or, combine the turnips with other root veggies in this Root Vegetable Salad with Miso Dressing.
Read more at Huffington Post.