Knowing your fruits and vegetables this Spring is more than just knowing what is in season, although I am going to tell you that, but also about knowing the benefits of them and which ones you should choose to add to your meals so that you can be in style. Understanding fruits and vegetables can help you lead a more nutritious life – as eating them at the peak of their season means they have maximum nutrition – but can also help turn you into a more effective chef in the kitchen because they will have maximum flavor at the peak of their seasons as well.
Strawberries are generally in season from April to June. If you aren’t somebody who loves these fruits, my guess is you’re either allergic or a very strange person (KIDDING). Strawberries are rich in antioxidants and packed with health benefits like preventing wrinkles (not entirely… but they help), immunity boosters, ellagic acid and flavonoids that help your heart and phytochemicals that work with the antioxidants (hello, vitamin c) to reduce inflammation.
Rhubarb is in season April to June, and while technically a vegetable – it is legally a fruit. (Weird, I know.) Rhubarbs look like celery but are much more tart – which makes for a great baking ingredient. Some great benefits of rhubarb are: digestion improvement, bone growth stimulation, prevention of Alzheimer’s, increased skin health, it helps your metabolism and circulation. Overall, rhubarbs are PACKED with nutrition, minerals, vitamins, dietary fiber, and a zillion other health benefits. Plus, they make a mean pie!
Apricots are in season May to July, usually. They’re packed with fiber, potassium and antioxidant carotenoids. These are best eaten fresh – as are all fruits and vegetables – as when you eat dried apricots, you lose a lot of the nutritional value in the heating process.
Blueberries are in season April to September, so you get them all spring andall summer. Loaded with vitamin C, these are some of the most commonly-used antioxidant fruits. They can help with urinary health as well. Blueberries are great for your skin, your cell wellness and your overall body health. Plus, they taste great in smoothies.
Asparagus are in season February to June with their peak nutritional value, and taste, being found in April. Nutrients include antioxidants, vitamins, B12 to help your brain get smarter and has an incredibly low fat-to-calorie ratio. The fiber in asparagus helps you stay full, too, so if you’re starting to eat clean – this is a great staple for your meal plans.
Radishes peak in April and provide incredible health benefits – especially with treating ailments in your liver and stomach. Radishes help with your digestion and with detoxing as well.
Spinach is easily found year-round but is at its peak nutritional value in April. Zinc, protein and fiber are all included in spinach – as well as all of the vitamins you can think of. The moral of spinach is that you should just eat it.It’s good for you… and it’s best for you in April.
Artichokes are best between March and May. Loaded with antioxidants, dietary fiber and digestive support – artichokes also help your brain and help lower your cholesterol. They can help improve liver health as well, so eat up after a night of drinking – or pair them with wine at dinnertime. That way theykind of cancel out the wine, right? Ha.
Peas are usually easily found year-round, but they are best in April. They have vitamin K, manganese, dietary fiber, vitamin B1, copper, vitamin C… need I go on? They help to fight against stomach cancer, anti-aging, help to build your immune system and help fight a myriad of diseases. The moral here? Eat your veggies, especially your peas!
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