Spice Up Your Veggies

March 7, 2017

Spring is one of my favorite seasons of the year. As we head into the springtime of the year, flowers begin to bloom and animals crawl out of hibernation. Also, new recipes are inspired from renewed freshness. This is a great time to take on new ways of upping your veggies to whole other level.

One of the reasons why we push for more vegetables in our diet is for the simple fact of FIBER amongst the other amazing goodness that vegetables bring. When we gravitate towards a meat-heavy diet, we crowd out the number of times we can intake more fiber into our diet. Why is this important? Well, fiber is one of the ways we can prevent cancer, especially colorectal cancer. PLUS, REMEMBER THERE IS ABSOLUTELY NO FIBER IN MEAT!

NY Times highlighted the fact that younger generations are now getting detected more with colorectal cancer. Between the ages 20-39, the rates of colorectal have increased from 1 to 2.4% since the mid 1980’s, while ages 55 and older have declined. This may be due to the fact that we have more well-established screening and detection processes starting at the age of 50 with no risk factors. This is a very ominous statistic! Younger people with colorectal cancer run the risk of being detected later in life where it could have been treated and managed a lot earlier, however the common thought is that this is a more age-related disease and it is not thought of in the younger generations.

What do we do? Systems need to be in place to consider a wider range of age detection, but in the meantime we can PREVENT by intaking more vegetables from a variety of sources and literally eating ALL THE COLORS of the rainbow. If you eat three times a day, I would recommend having veggies at every meal and establish that into a habit. But for those who are not used to eating vegetables, I encourage you to take another look at these guys besides just resorting to French Fries as one of your daily servings.

Here are some ways to spice up your veggies:

  1. Roasting your vegetables will add a more rustic taste and aroma to your dishes.
  2. Marinating helps lock in more flavors than adding flavors right before cooking.
  3. Use a slow cooker. This elevates the juices of whatever you’re cooking and add more nutrition!
  4. Practice using garlic and dry herbs and spices before every dish. For more Asian dishes, use ginger, cumin and who knows…try some tumeric as well.
  5. Make your own dressings, it’s simple!
  6. Use an acid like a vinegar as an alternative if you want to add salt.
  7. Practice using citrus juices to bring out the depth of flavor from your dishes!

There’s no secret to cooking great food. It’s already great when YOU step into the kitchen.

With Love - thechefdoc

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