A blast of summer heat is predicted to hit the East Coast this week followed by a precipitous decline in something more fall-like with temperatures going below 70 degrees Fahrenheit. It’s as sure a signal as anything that summer and the time for warm weather fare are waning. To fortify you for the upcoming season, here are some packed-with-nutrient superfoods that can not only nourish your body but also foster a sense of well-being.
Long associated with the start of fall, apples imported from halfway around the world are now available year-round in the produce section of your local store. Fall is when you can pick them locally; seek out organic fruit, which can give you all the more reason to eat the skin without worrying about pesticide residue. Apple’s skins contain the antioxidant quercetin and the fruits themselves contain calcium, Vitamin C and folate.
The deep violet-red color of these vegetables comes from betacynanin, which has been shown to have cancer-fighting properties (especially for fighting colon cancer). Beets also contain B vitamin, folate, manganese and potassium. They can also be yellow or, if they’re Chioggia beets, striped pink-and-white.
3. Brussel Sprouts
I confess: I personally adore this much-maligned vegetable and enjoy them the simplest way possible, steamed with a dash of pepper. Even if you are not an aficionado like me, you might try a few and take advantage of the Vitamin C (more than in an orange), Vitamin K, calcium and folate they contain. Roast them with some olive oil, spices and garlic or chop them up and saute.
With a high amount of fiber, a number of fat-soluble B-vitamins and the trace mineral, manganese (an antioxidant that soaks up free radicals and is linked to reduced risk for cancer and heart disease), chestnuts shouldn’t only be thought of as roasting on a open fire. Once roasted (in your oven, which is probably more convenient for most of us than said open fire) they can be combined into salads, chopped up and added to oatmeal or eaten on their own.
5. Green Tea
The benefits of green tea cannot be overstated: it has been shown to reduce inflammation and bad cholesterol and also to help with weight loss, keeping your teeth healthy and staving off Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. With temperatures cooling down, why not brew yourself a hot cup?
Photos from Thinkstock
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