Fit & Fresh

Spotlight on Kale

Kale

Are you a part of the kale club, yet? Chances are, you either just nodded your head in agreement or turned up your nose at the thought of anything that might resemble a leafy green. Whether you’re a kale lover or a kale skeptic, I’ve got news for you. It’s one of the hottest commodities on the market, and I don’t think it’s going anywhere any time soon!

I confess, I love my kale. I’m always encouraging my clients to eat more leafy greens throughout the day because of its impressive nutrient profile. If it were up to me, leafy greens might even make up their own food group!

Kale is a cool-weather green and you might have noticed that it is frequently on sale at the grocery store this time of year. Leafy greens are known as “longevity foods”, as their nutrients help us stay healthy for the long haul.

The key nutrients found in kale are:

  • Dietary fiber which promotes healthy digestion and aids in detoxification of the body.
  • Antioxidants which fight free radicals to decrease risk of cancer and is the secret to nature’s anti-aging power.
  • High in Vitamin A, C and K which promote healthy eyes, glowing skin, a strong immune system, boosts metabolism and helps fight certain cancers (to name a few!).
  • Omega-3 fatty acids (the good fats) which makes kale a superstar on the anti-inflammatory list.

5 Ways to incorporate Kale into Your Day

Start your morning off with a green smoothie! I aim to drink a smoothie daily (that I’ve made at home to avoid added sugars found in most store-bought drinks) and always add a handful of leafy greens in the mix. Best part is, you can’t even taste them. I promise!

Snack on a bag of kale chips. There are so many fantastic kale chips that can be found in the store nowadays that are a much better option than your traditional bag of fried potato chips. You can also experiment with making them at home for a healthy, crunchy snack!

Make breakfast for dinner, or what I like to call “brinner”. Breakfast foods are quick and satisfying and can be a huge lifesaver when you’re just not feelin’ it in the kitchen. This sweet potato and kale hash requires minimal ingredients and is a delicious way to get in more greens.

Throw some greens in a soup. I love soups, even when it’s blistering hot outside. Is it just me? Simply add some chopped kale or spinach at the end of making a big pot of soup for some extra green power!

Make a simple salad. One of my favorite ways to eat kale is by making a simple salad. Tear the leaves off of the fibrous stem into bite-sized pieces and add to a large bowl. Juice a lemon over the kale leaves and massage. Yes, you heard me. Massage your kale leaves to break down the fibers for a tender and delicious side salad!

  • Jake Ratke

    I put kale in my breakfast smoothie all the time! I think its one of the healthiest greens there is. I am actually growing it now in my garden so I don’t have to buy it at whole foods.

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