Summer is the season all designated to increase the consumption of fruits and vegetables. Even if you are a steady meat eater, don’t forget to garnish your plate with fresh, colorful and crisp vegetables. The end result: a tighter belly and a happier body!
Here are 5 benefits you will reap without a shadow of a doubt, when you eat vegetables:
1. Hot outside and fresh inside
It is 32 ° c degrees outside and you have 2 choices of dishes:
(a) say a plate of red fatty meat, cooked on the barbecue with fried potatoes, accompanied by two sad stems of broccoli cooked excessively, or
(b) a colourful salad, for example a Greek salad with fresh tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, olives and feta cheese.
Which will be more refreshing?
When you eat vegetables and especially raw, the body temperature drops. Why? Because these are foods that have high water content and are by definition refreshing and hydrating.
For informational purpose, here are the percentage of water content of some summery fruits and vegetables:
|Watermelon: 95%||Cucumber: 97%||Strawberries: 92%|
|Radish: 95%||Celery: 95%||Tomatoes: 95%|
So drink them up!
2. Ready for the holidays
The more fruits and vegetables you eat, the quicker you are ready for the beach. If you have a few small pounds to lose, the fat accumulated during the winter period will kind of melt like snow under the Sun! As you know, summer fruits and vegetables are low in calorie, high in vitamin and waterlogged (I know, I’m repeating myself)!
3. It’s cheap
Farmer’s markets are everywhere nowadays. Buying fresh, locally grown and seasonal is something easy and accessible today even if you live in the Northern hemisphere. Not only are they healthy, but buying fruits and vegetalbles that are in season will help save money in your wallet.
Hint: When you are buying your fruits and vegetables, think buying colors: red, green, orange, purple. In the plant world, each color contains its own natural phytonutrients which are extremely beneficial for your health.
4. A more alkaline body
Plants tend to be alkaline. Alkaline is contrary to acidic which increases body inflammation. Let me explain: our body needs an Alkaline-acidic balance diet but it does better in a slightly alkaline environnement. Unfortunately, in the Western world our general diet (meat, refined products, trans fats, white flour and sugar, etc.), continuous stress and pollution are all factors that contribute significantly to an acidic body. In a general way, all chronic so-called modern diseases are associated with an acidic body. So to help your body be more alkaline, think green vegetables, fresh herbs, sprouts and fruits.
In the recipe below, I don’t pretend teaching you anything new. It is simply a reminder of how a simple colorful Greek Salad is an all designated lunch in summer. Enjoy your meal!
- 2 Lebanese cucumbers, cut into large cubes
- 1 small green pepper, cut into large cubes
- 1 big red tomato, cut in big chunks or 1 cup of cherry tomatoes sliced in half
- ¼ red onion, sliced
- ¼ cup Kalamata olives
- 1 or 2 slices of feta cheese, crumbled
- 2 Tbsp Virgin olive oil (or more)
- 1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1 Tsp dry oregano or fresh
- Chopped fresh mint (optional)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Start by putting the tomatoes in a large bowl. Season with salt.
- Cut and add the rest of the vegetables.
- Add olive oil, wine vinegar, salt, pepper, oregano.
- The secret: taste and correct the seasoning and the amount of feta cheese to your liking.