Have a Plant: Fruits & Veggies for Better Health

Happy National Nutrition Month®! As a Registered Dietitian, I am so proud that our nation has brought nutrition and healthful eating to the forefront! Individuals now understand the importance of providing nutritious, well-balanced meals and snacks for themselves and their families. People everywhere are asking about food, ingredients, and exciting new ways to prepare food at home!

The theme for National Nutrition Month 2013 is “Eat Right, Your Way, Every Day.” To a Registered Dietitian, this cannot be better said! Many times I am confronted with the question, “Well, what should I eat?” My response remains constant, “What do you like?” Eating is a way to nourish and energize our bodies, but it also provides so much more! Food provides comfort, stimulates our senses, and connects us to our families, traditions, and heritage.

Since food has become much more readily available in our lives, our pallets have expanded to include foods from other cultures. Let National Nutrition Month 2013 guide you to new foods, new tastes, and new experiences. Keep the focus on variety, moderation, and portion control and of course always strive to eat MORE fruits and vegetables. Here are a few dishes to get you started!

  • Chinese: Stir fry chicken, brown rice, and vegetables such as bok choy, snap peas, carrots and bean sprouts.
  • Italian: Assemble vegetable lasagna using eggplant, zucchini, and lycopene-rich tomatoes.
  • Greek: Sauté okra with tomatoes and onions or artichokes in olive oil.
  • Mexican: Serve up a bowl of yummy gazpacho or top your favorite salad with slices of jicama and a squeeze of lime juice.
  • German: Combine egg noodles with cabbage and onions for a comforting dish.
  • Middle Eastern: Try tabouleh to put a unique spin on a traditional salad. Combine couscous, tomatoes, cucumbers, parsley, minion, onion, and garlic.
  • African: Create a sweet ending with baked pumpkin sprinkled with cinnamon.
  • Asian: Mix up a mango chutney and add to lean protein sources such as chicken or salmon.

Recipe

Pennsylvania Halushki

Ingredients

    • 1 head of green cabbage, chopped
    • 2 large yellow onions, chopped
    • 1 head of broccoli, chopped (optional)
    • 2 crushed garlic cloves
    • 1 stick of margarine
    • 12 oz egg noodles
    • salt and pepper to taste

Directions
Sauté cabbage, onions, and garlic in margarine. Cook egg noodles according to directions. Drain noodles and combine with cabbage mixture.

NOTE: I add broccoli to the cabbage mixture to add color, texture, and nutrition!

Meredith Mensinger RD, LDN
Corporate Dietitian
Redner’s Warehouse Markets

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