It’s not uncommon for us to frequently see the color green during the month of March. The approaching of springtime brings back flowers and luscious grass after the dry, dreary days of winter, and, of course, there’s the celebration of St. Patrick’s Day when green treats and leprechauns run amuck.
While there are plenty of healthy St. Patrick’s Day recipes that will help you celebrate the luck of the Irish, the best green foods to add to your diet can be done throughout the year. In fact, eating more green fruits and vegetables is one of the best -- and simplest -- ways to boost your overall health.
When it comes to healthy eating, we often hear about the importance of adding color to your plate, referring to a variety of fruits and vegetables. By filling half of your plate at every meal with fruits and vegetables, you are guaranteed to consume a majority of the nutrients needed to help you stay healthy as you age.
While all fruits and vegetables are beneficial, green produce is packed with many essential nutrients. With health benefits ranging from maintaining strong bones to reducing the risk of certain types of cancer, it’s no wonder that the best green foods for seniors come from nature.
The perfect springtime vegetable, asparagus is filled with a variety of essential nutrients, like fiber, folate, antioxidants and vitamins A, C, E and K. Some other health benefits of asparagus include preventing cognitive decline and acting as a natural diuretic, helping your body release fluids and excess salts.
To enjoy all of these health benefits, we recommend this ricotta gnocchi with spring vegetables recipe that combines all of the best green foods available this time of year. You can even add grilled chicken or poached salmon to make this dish more filling.
Known as a superfood, avocado is particularly healthy for your heart. A recent study conducted by researchers from Penn State actually found that when compared to two other diets, a diet that included 34 percent fat and an avocado a day was the most effective in lowering cholesterol levels and promoting the participants’ heart health.
Not only are they heart healthy, but avocados are also extremely versatile. Whether you’re craving an avocado with breakfast, lunch, dinner and even for a snack, here are some creative ways you can incorporate avocado into your diet.
In the same family as brussels sprouts, cauliflower and cabbage, broccoli is packed with many health benefits, including helping to prevent osteoarthritis, boosting kidney health and even lowering your blood pressure. It’s also been shown to help you stay healthier longer since it slows down the weakening of the immune system that occurs with age.
Whether you enjoy roasted, steamed or even tender-crisp broccoli, this is one of the most versatile vegetables that can be eaten on its own or added to a dish. If you’re looking for a new mid-afternoon snack or a side dish to try, this recipe for roasted garlic lemon broccoli is both flavorful and healthy.
Cucumbers are not only crunchy and delicious, but the dearth of cucumber health benefits makes them all the more worthy of choosing for a snack. Cucumbers promote heart health, keep your brain sharp as you age and lower your risk of certain types of cancers. They also help you stay hydrated since they’re 95 percent water.
Luckily, there are many ways you can enjoy the full range of cucumber health benefits. You can include raw cucumbers in salads, eat them fermented as a pickle or use them as a side dish or snack. No matter how you choose to add cucumbers to your diet, you should always purchase organic cucumbers since conventionally-grown cucumbers ranked as the 13th most contaminated food, according to the Environmental Working Group.
The classic cartoon Popeye was spot on about the many spinach benefits! Similar to asparagus, this superfood is also packed with vitamins A, K, D and E, along with cancer-fighting antioxidants. Plus, spinach benefits eye health by reducing the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration, and since it’s a good source of calcium and magnesium, spinach even helps strengthen your bones.
To enjoy all of these spinach benefits, we recommend trying this recipe for mini-spinach calzones. Packed with flavor while being low in calories, they’re the perfect mid-afternoon snack.
Green Foods Are Great, But Don’t Rely on Luck
While adding the best green foods to your diet and eating healthy year-round are two essential components of healthy aging, it’s important to remember that accidents and medical emergencies can unfortunately still happen -- anytime and anywhere. While it’s easy to think that eating right and exercising means your luck will hold out and that you’ll never experience a fall, the reality is that one in three seniors fall every year, and luck is not a factor.
The good news, however, is that you’ll never have to rely on luck when you have Medical Guardian on your side. Whether you’re looking to stay safe inside of your home or anywhere you go, our full suite of products will provide you with a direct line to help should you experience a fall.
Plus, when you order today and mention promo code LUCKY17, you’ll receive a free $25 Amazon gift card*. Ensuring your safety and getting rewarded for it has never been easier thanks to Medical Guardian. So, the real question is: are you feeling lucky?