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More Greens Besides Kale or Spinach for Your Diet

By Stephen R. Farris

If you're trying to eat healthier, then you probably hear all the time the importance of eating more leafy green vegetables. The problem is that most of your local groceries carry a plentiful supply of kale, spinach, and collard greens, while other varieties of raw green vegetables are only available when in season.

This can leave you limited in choices when trying to plan different meals for you or your family. Sure, you can look in the freezer section and probably find a few different green leafy vegetables, but for some reason -- at least in my opinion -- nothing compares to the fresh varieties.

You may have to think outside your grocery store when it comes to buying different varieties of green leafy vegetables, such as shopping at your local farmers market, or an organic food store, or a local farm that sells straight from garden to table -- they do exist.

Here's a few you might want to try if you can find them.

Watercress

Watercress is related to the Brussels sprout and cabbage family of green leafy vegetables. It's a great choice and is loaded with many vitamins, nutrients, and minerals from omega-3s, Vitamins K, C, and B6, protein, calcium, fiber, and magnesium to name a few. Its light peppery flavor makes for a great addition to salads, sandwiches, or as a side dish.

Dandelion Greens

Dandelion greens are very similar to kale. The greens can be added to some of your favorite breakfast dishes, or for added flavor to your Italian pasta dishes. Dandelion greens contain at least four nutrients -- iron, calcium, potassium, and magnesium.

Mustard Greens

You can likely find mustard greens at larger farmer's markets, or grocery chains. Mustard's are related to their cousins collards and turnip greens. They contain five vitamins (A, B6, C, E, and K), along with copper, calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, riboflavin (Vitamin B2), and thiamine (Vitamin B1). They're great by themselves (raw or cooked), or added to soup and casseroles.

Beet Greens

A lot of folks forget about the leafy greens found at the top of beet roots, but the stems and the greens are a great source of nutrients and minerals. The taste is similar to chard and can be used in salads and pastas. The nutrients and minerals -- according to research -- have been linked to eye health, due to their abundance of potassium, calcium. riboflavin, fiber, Vitamin K, beta-carotene (Vitamin A), and lutein. 

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in The Woodlands, Tex.

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