Total Pageviews

Tuesday 30 July 2019

Root Vegetables : So Healthy

Rachael Link MS RD writes:
"Root vegetables have long been enjoyed as a delicious part of a healthy diet.
Defined as an edible plant that grows underground, potatoes, carrots and onions are a few common examples that most are familiar with.
However, there are many other types — each with a distinct set of nutrients and health benefits.

Here are the 13 healthiest root vegetables to add to your diet.

1. Onions
Onions are popular root vegetables, serving as a staple ingredient in many cuisines. They’re high in fibre, vitamin C and antioxidants. Onions work well in a variety of meals and can easily be added to salads, soups, scrambled eggs, casseroles and many more.

Summary Onions are high in antioxidants and may help reduce blood sugar levels and your risk of certain cancers. 

2. Sweet Potatoes 
Sweet potatoes are vibrant and delicious root vegetables that are highly nutritious and jam-packed with health benefits. They’re rich in fibre, vitamin C, manganese and vitamin A and a good source of several antioxidants. Sweet potatoes can be baked, boiled, roasted or sautéed and enjoyed as a delicious side dish or added to everything from sandwiches to salads to breakfast bowls.

Summary Sweet potatoes may help improve blood sugar control and are high in vitamin A, which may preserve vision and improve immunity and skin health. 

3. Turnips 
Turnips are a delicious root vegetable and have been cultivated for centuries. They have an impressive nutrient profile, being a great source of vitamin C, fibre, manganese and potassium. Turnips can be swapped into nearly any recipe in place of potatoes. Try making turnip fries, coleslaw, stir-fry or salad.

Summary Turnips are high in immune-boosting vitamin C and considered a root as well as cruciferous vegetable. Eating it may be associated with a lower risk of certain types of cancer.

4. Ginger 
Ginger is a flowering plant from China that is closely related to other root vegetables like turmeric. It’s loaded with antioxidants, including a specific compound called gingerol, which has been associated with a long list of health benefits. It may also decrease pain and inflammation, with other research showing that ginger extract could help relieve menstrual pain and reduce symptoms in people with osteoarthritis. Ginger makes a great addition to tea, soups, smoothies and stews and can bring a zesty zing to just about any dish.

Summary Ginger is rich in antioxidants and can help reduce nausea and decrease pain and inflammation.

5. Beets 
Beets are one of the most nutritious root vegetables available, packing a good amount of fibre, folate and manganese into each serving. They’re also high in nitrates, which are beneficial plant compounds that can help dilate your blood vessels, potentially lowering blood pressure and improving heart health. To take advantage of the unique health benefits of beets, try roasting, juicing, pickling, boiling or steaming this delicious root vegetable.

Summary Beets are a good source of nitrates and may improve exercise performance, increase blood flow and decrease the growth of cancer cells — according to human and animal studies.

6. Garlic 
Garlic is a root vegetable that belongs to the Allium genus and is closely related to onions, leeks, chives and shallots. Each serving of garlic boasts a good amount of several important nutrients, including manganese, vitamin B6 and vitamin C. Plus, it’s well-known for its medicinal properties, studies have found that garlic can promote heart health by lowering blood pressure and levels of total cholesterol and triglycerides. It may also boost immune function, as research shows that it can decrease symptom severity and help prevent infections, such as the common cold. Best of all, garlic is highly versatile and can be used to amplify the flavour of your favourite savoury soups, sauces, side dishes and main courses.

Summary Garlic has potent medicinal properties due to the compound allicin. It may help improve your immunity, reduce blood pressure and decrease cholesterol and triglyceride levels.

7. Radishes 
Radishes may be small, but they manage to pack a punch when it comes to nutrition. They’re low in carbs and calories, yet contain a good amount of fibre and vitamin C. Radishes are great for bringing a bit of crunch to your meals or snacks. Try adding slices to slaws, sandwiches, salads or tacos to give your dish a nutritious and tasty upgrade.

Summary Radishes contain a good amount of fibre and vitamin C. They may also have antifungal properties and could protect against stomach ulcers, according to animal and test-tube studies.

8. Fennel 
Known for its liquorice-like flavour, fennel is a flowering plant species closely related to carrots. In addition to supplying very few calories per serving, fennel packs fibre, vitamin C, potassium and manganese. Fennel can be enjoyed fresh, roasted or sautéed, as well as mixed into salads, soups, sauces and pasta dishes.

Summary Fennel contains the compound anethole, which has been shown to reduce blood sugar and block the growth of bacteria in test-tube and animal studies.

9. Carrots 
As one of the most well-known root vegetables, carrots also top the charts as one of the most nutritious. They’re brimming with vitamins A and K, as well as the important antioxidant beta-carotene. What’s more, eating carotenoids may protect against age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the leading cause of vision loss. Carrots make a great snack when eaten raw or dipped in hummus, but they can also be cooked and used in stir-fries, stews or side dishes.

Summary Carrots are high in beta-carotene, which may be tied to a lower risk of vision problems and certain types of cancer. Eating carrots has also been linked to lower cholesterol levels and improved antioxidant status. 

10. Celeriac 
Also known as celery root, celeriac is a highly versatile and delicious root vegetable that’s easy to cook and enjoy. It contains a hearty dose of vitamin C and phosphorus and is also an excellent source of vitamin K, squeezing in 80% of the daily recommended value in a single one-cup (156-gram) serving. Vitamin K is an essential nutrient, necessary for proper blood clotting. It’s also needed for the function of osteocalcin, a protein hormone that is key for your bone health. Celeriac has a nutty taste and crunchy texture that works especially well in salads. It can also be boiled, roasted, baked or mashed and used in place of potatoes in nearly any recipe.

Summary Celeriac is a nutrient-rich root vegetable that’s high in vitamin K, a vitamin that is necessary for blood clotting and bone health. 

11. Turmeric 
Turmeric is a type of root vegetable that belongs to the same plant family as ginger and cardamom. The rhizomes, or root, of the plant are often ground into a spice, which is used to add a splash of color, flavour and health benefits to many dishes. Turmeric contains a compound called curcumin, which has been shown to prevent blood clot formation, lower cholesterol levels and reduce markers of inflammation in both test-tube and animal studies. Research in humans also suggests that curcumin may alleviate joint pain, stabilize blood sugar levels and decrease symptoms of depression. Turmeric is widely available as a spice and can be added to both savoury and sweet recipes, as well as drinks, such as golden turmeric milk. To reap its benefits, be sure to pair turmeric with black pepper, as the latter contains a compound that can significantly boost the absorption of curcumin in your gut.

Summary Turmeric contains curcumin, a compound that has been associated with a long list of benefits, including improved joint pain, blood sugar levels and symptoms of depression. 

12. Potatoes 
Potatoes* are incredibly versatile and widely available, with up to 2,000 different varieties currently cultivated in 160 countries around the world. They’re also very nutritious, packing a good chunk of fibre, vitamin C, vitamin B6, potassium and manganese. Steer clear of fried potatoes or processed potato products, which are often high in fat, salt and calories yet lacking in nutrition. Instead, select baked, boiled or steamed potatoes to get the most nutrients.

Summary Potatoes pack many nutrients and are high in resistant starch. 

13. Rutabaga (Swede) 
Rutabagas (swede) are root vegetables that belong to the mustard family and are commonly cultivated for their edible leaves and roots. Each serving of rutabagas supplies plenty of vitamin C, potassium and manganese along with disease-fighting antioxidants. Rutabagas are also a good source of fibre, which can help support your digestive health and lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Rutabaga (swede) can be mashed, baked or roasted and enjoyed in soups, salads, noodles and even desserts.

Summary Rutabagas (swede) are high in fibre and glucosinolates, which may help protect against cancer and prevent oxidative stress. 

The Bottom Line 

Plenty of nutritious and delicious root vegetables exist — each with a unique set of health benefits. From reducing oxidative stress to preventing chronic disease, adding a serving or two of root vegetables to your daily diet can be incredibly beneficial. For best results, combine these tasty root vegetables with a variety of other nutrient-rich ingredients to help optimize your diet and your health."
Rachael's full article with all information / research links is here

*Many diabetics, and those who live the LCHF or Keto lifestyle, do not include potatoes in their menu plans and this article does include potatoes. They contain starch and the impact of the starch in potatoes can place them in the "bad carb" category for some people. While healthy individuals can tolerate them in moderation, the carbohydrates in potatoes are not a good choice for anyone who is diabetic or prediabetic or needs to keep their blood sugar balanced. Please read 'Introduction to low-carb for beginners' for more details, you can see it here

If you would like to know more about the lower carb vegetables, you can read about the best and the worst here

Readers, we bring a variety of articles, studies etc. plus recent news/views and recipe ideas to this blog, we hope something for everyone to read and enjoy. Please note, not all may be suitable for you. If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues these must always be taken into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

All the best Jan


Valerie-Jael said...

I love all root veggies, they are so good and delicious. Valerie

dellgirl said...

Oh wow, this is great. I love, love, LOVE me some Root Vegetables. There are only a few on the list that I have not had.

This post is really full of valuable information, as always. Thank you for putting this together and for sharing it. I learned a lot here.

Wishing you all the best, Have a wonderful week my friend!

mxtodis123 said...

Love all of them.

Elephant's Child said...

Healthy and yum. Win/win.

Chris Lally said...

What a great article, Jan! I eat a mainly plant based diet so veggie articles are always interesting :)

Chatty Crone said...

I loved your article and realize I don't eat that well. Boy I wish I had a chef. sandie

Angie said...

Jan - out of this list, I love sweet potatoes and beets; but I will eat just about any vegetable. I think I need to ask my hubby to buy radishes (he does all the shopping!) Thanks for some fresh ideas!

Snowbird said...

What an interesting informative article!xxx

Sandra Cox said...

I enjoyed this article, Jan. There're a lot of root plants out there that don't get the attention they deserve.

happyone said...

I eat many of these. Good to have something good for you and tasty too.

peppylady (Dora) said...

celeriac isn't something I tried.

Tom said...

...wonderful things from underground!

CJ Kennedy said...

Such a wide variety of root veggies. Who knew! Thanks for sharing

Pink Rose said...

Hi Jan great post my friend,i love my veggies,though there are a few i havent been game enough to try,love the interesting information you have added with each veggie,thankyou Jan xx

aussie aNNie said...

Delish love vegs.xx

Iris Flavia said...

Apart from garlic I´m a fan :-)

Lady Fi said...

I love root vegetables, especially baked in the oven with olive oil and herbs.

baili said...

magnificent sharing dear Jan

i love winters because it brings many favorite vegetables along like carrot ,beetroots ,spinach ,radish cauliflower cabbage and few more i love all these
ginger and garlic and potatoes are available throughout the year though

Jo said...

I eat most of those, delicious!

Francisco Manuel Carrajola Oliveira said...

Vegetais para uma alimentação saudável, aproveito para desejar a continuação de uma boa semana.

Dedais de Francisco e Idalisa
O prazer dos livros

mamasmercantile said...

I am a fan of most on the list and eat them regularly. Fennel is the exception, I am never too sure what to do with it.

My name is Erika. said...

I love these types of veggies even though most of our fresh ones aren't quite ready to pick yet. A nice beet salad would certainly be a good lunch today.Happy Wednesday!

Miss Val's Creations said...

So many goodies under ground! There are only a couple that I don't care for but all the others are regulars in my diet. Although I have yet to try rutabagas.

PerthDailyPhoto said...

Love all of above Jan, most unfortunately not included in Keto.. must confess to the odd cheat now and then 😉

Ygraine said...

I really like root vegetables...celeriac is the only one you mention here that I haven't yet tried.
I like mixed root vegetable crisps too...probably too much!! Lol
A fabulous post...that has made me feel decidedly hungry!😉😉

Hope you're having a super day!

Hugs xxx

Victor S E Moubarak said...

Thank you for the wonderful information. Most of these are favourite of ours.

God bless.

Sally said...

We could eat sweet potatoes every day! Love most of these with exception of a couple I'd not heard of and will check out! :)

Always such wonderful information here, Jan. Thank you!

Bill said...

I already eat most of these, they are some of my favorites.

Thickethouse.wordpress said...

Love root vegetables, but the ones I seem not to eat often are turnips. I need to make an effort to include them more. I like them well enough.

J C said...

Good post! I love rutabaga, but they are soooooooo hard to cut!

Sue said...

I'm very lucky in that I love all of these, especially sweet pototoes and ginger - everything has to have some ginger! Take care, Sue x said...

Thanks for all the interesting information. I didn't realise fennel was related to carrots.

Author R. Mac Wheeler said...

I gotta tell you rutabaga was a bomb at our table. Did not like the taste.

Anonymous said...

This was very interesting. In our house we enjoy most of the vegetables here.


William Kendall said...

It's been quite awhile since I've had beets.

Teresa said...

Casi todas me gustan, hay algunas que no he probado. Besitos y feliz agosto.

Sue (this n that) said...

Hi Jan, its soup making time where we live and I always love to include as many root vegies as possible. Interesting to read about a lot of them here :D)

sandy said...

I've read how good turmeric is for the body. i don't think i've had it on anything. and i like root vegetables ..some of them. I don't like carrots unless they are grated small raw to put in a salad. then I don't know I'm eating them.

Debbie said...

onions and garlic go in almost everything i cook!!!

Phil Slade said...

We have a good few ticks there Jan. Onions, garlic and sweet potatoes especially.

Bob Bushell said...

The root vegetarian is so beautiful health, lovely.

David M. Gascoigne, said...

We regularly eat virtually everything you depict here. Last night we made a vegetarian lasagna with broccoli, mushrooms, cauliflower, garlic and onion. Delicious!

Jeanie said...

Apart from beets, most root veggies are my favorites. But I never really think about rutabegga. (Sp.) Maybe I should!

Magic Love Crow said...

Excellent post! Thank you Jan! Big Hugs!