Dressing Up Your Fruits & Veggies for a Delicious Heart Month
The countdown for National Wear Red Day 2016 has begun. The American Heart Association GoRed® for Women invites not only thinking of their Red Dress logo during the first Friday of February, but also thinking of the heart-health of the women in OUR lives.
Dressing up makes us feel special and invites us to have fun! And we can agree that the color red makes a statement. Phytochemical-rich strawberries, raspberries, ruby red grapefruits, beets, tomatoes and red bell peppers certainly make their presence known in the produce section of grocery store. These fruits and vegetables want an invite to a heart-healthy celebration.
Dressing up fruits and vegetables not only helps us to meet the heart-healthy eating recommendations, but it invites us to enjoy fruit and veggies with tasty toppings containing less sugar and less sodium.
We can cut the saturated fat and calories in a creamy dressing by using a half portion of low-fat mayonnaise and plain Greek-style yogurt. Salty taste and unnecessary sodium can be replaced with dried or a combination of fresh and dried herbs. Sugar sometimes can mellow a tart-tasting fruit, and a balance of honey and lemon juice provides antioxidant vitamin C with less added sugar.
2 Recipes to Dress Up a Good Time during Heart Month
Prep time: 10 minutes
- 2 cups cantaloupe, cubed
- 2 cups fresh washed mixed berries (blueberries, raspberries and strawberries, sliced)
- ½ cup Greek-style low-fat plain yogurt
- 1 Tbsp. honey
- 2 tsp. lemon juice
- ¼ tsp. lemon zest
- ½ teaspoon fresh all natural mint
- Toss cantaloupe and berries in a large serving bowl.
- In a small bowl, stir together yogurt, honey, lemon juice and lemon zest.
- Pour dressing over the fruit and toss.
- Sprinkle crushed mint.
Baby Kale Dip
- 1 (5 oz.) 1 (5 oz.) bag baby kale mix, chopped
- Small red bell pepper, finely chopped
- ½ tsp. oregano leaves
- 2 Tbsp. parsley flakes
- ½ cup green onion, chopped
- ½ cup canola cholesterol-free mayonnaise
- ½ cup sharp light shredded cheddar
- ½ cup plain nonfat greek yogurt
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Crackers and Assorted veggies (celery, sugar snap peas)
Combine all ingredients except crackers and veggies to make the dip. Serve with crackers and colorful vegetables.
Amount per serving: 58 Calories; 4 g Total Fat: 1 g Saturated, 2 g Polyunsaturated, 1 g Monounsaturated; 6 mg Cholesterol; 4 g Total Carbohydrate; 3 g Protein; 65 mg Calcium
Recipes courtesy of “Simply Healthy from your Hannaford Dietitian”
Marilyn Mills, MS, RD, LD, CDE