In Season this month – February
Blood Oranges, Brussels Sprouts, Cauliflower, Celeriac, Chicory, Jerusalem Artichoke, Kale, Kiwi Fruit, Leeks, Passion Fruit, Pineapple, Pomegranate, Purple Sprouting Broccoli, Rhubarb, Turnips
Here’s a little fact about Jerusalem artichokes
Jerusalem artichokes are not actually artichokes, they are a species of sunflower and they are not even from Jerusalem. The word derives from the word ‘girasole’ – Italian for sunflower.
Benefits of Jerusalem artichokes: rich in iron to give you energy as well as potassium and vitamin B1. They support muscles and nerves and are rich in the soluble fibre Inulin which is a prebiotic and balances blood sugar levels.
Every month I write about the delicious fruit and vegetables that are in season but let’s take a look at some of the benefits of these foods.
Plants contain natural compounds called phytonutrients or phytochemicals known to be powerful defenders of health and studies show that eating more plant foods may reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease.
Phytonutrients also provide functions for the plant itself such as protection from pests.
In the human body the phytonutrients help stimulate enzymes that help the body to boost the immune system, to improve cardiovascular health, to get rid of toxins and to promote healthy oestrogen metabolism.
Not only are fruits and vegetable rich sources of phytonutrients, but also whole grains, legumes, herbs and spices and nuts and seeds.
Eating the Rainbow
These phytonutrients in foods come in all different colours – red, yellow, orange, green, purple and white and in order to promote good health, it is important to eat fruits and vegetables of a variety of colour on a daily basis
The first basic step to develop a healthy way of eating is to start with colour
This month let’s take a look at the benefits of BROWN and BEIGE food.
Brown or beige foods might sound unappealing, but they are an important part of your rainbow of plant based foods. Forget bagels, pasta and processed food – we are talking the healthy stuff here; nuts, cauliflower, Jerusalem artichokes, garlic, mushrooms, onion plus spices, seeds, and whole grains.
Mushrooms are super versatile and come in all kinds of varieties that are considered to have significant medicinal benefit because of their ability to help the immune system. Mushrooms contain potassium and vitamins C, D, and E.
Try Shiitake, button, portobello and chanterelle with a brown rice dish, on a salad or in a delicious homemade soup.
Ways to include more brown and beige foods:
- Make my Jerusalem artichoke soup
- Add a variety of mushrooms to a brown rice salad
- Sprinkle sesame seeds on a vegetable stir-fry