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Check Your Roots

by Marissa on November 11, 2013

Fall vegetables

When you think about healthy eating, salads and green juice probably come to mind. But how about adding a little more variety, especially since it’s root vegetable season? Earlier this week, we celebrated the beet with my healthy meal planning ideas for roasted beets.

Root vegetables like carrots, sweet potatoes, and turnips, are a rich source of nutritious complex carbohydrates. Instead of upsetting blood sugar levels like refined sweet foods do, they help regulate them.

Why Eat More Root Veggies?

Long roots – carrots, parsnips, burdock, and daikon radish – are excellent blood purifiers and can help improve circulation in the body. Round roots – turnips, radishes, beets, and rutabagas – nourish the stomach, spleen, pancreas, and reproductive organs. Most people eat carrots and potatoes most, but here are a few others to try:

  • Beets contain an abundance of antioxidants and are highly detoxifying.
  • Burdock is considered a powerful blood purifier. This long, thin veggie is a staple in Asian and health food stores.
  • Celeriac, also known as celery root, is rich in fiber and has a respectable amount of antioxidants.
  • Jicama is crunchy and refreshing and contains a generous amount of vitamin C. It’s a favorite in its native Mexico and South America.
  • Onions are rich in antioxidants and other phytonutrients, making them prized for their ability to strengthen the immune system.
  • Parsnips, which look like giant white carrots, boast a sweet, earthy taste. They’ve also got plenty of fiber, vitamin C, folic acid, niacin, thiamine, magnesium, and potassium.
  • Radish is an excellent source of vitamin C. It’s also rich in calcium, molybdenum, and folic acid.
  • Sweet Potatoes contain unsurpassed levels of beta-carotene and are also rich in vitamin C, phytonutrients, and fiber.

Here’s a fun, easy recipe that I love to make this time of year:

Roasted Root Vegetables

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 25-35 minutes

Serves 4 to 6

Ingredients:

  • 1 sweet potato
  • 2 parsnips
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 turnips or 1 large rutabaga
  • 1 daikon radish (or substitute/add in other favorites, like squash)
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • herbs: rosemary, thyme, or sage (fresh if possible)

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Wash and dice all vegetables into bite-sized cubes.
  • Place in a large baking dish with sides.
  • Drizzle with olive oil; mix well to coat each vegetable lightly with oil. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and herbs.
  • Bake uncovered for 25-35 minutes until vegetables are tender and golden brown, checking every 10 minutes to stir and make sure veggies are not sticking.

Tip: any combination of vegetables will work. Roasting only one kind of vegetable also makes a nice side dish.

Get Even Healthier!

Are you curious about how to choose root vegetables and other nutritious foods? Would you like help being as healthy as you can? Let’s talk! Schedule an initial complimentary consultation with me today – or pass this offer on to someone you care about!

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