November 28, 2017 by Heather

The Healthiest Ways to Cook Your Vegetables

We all know just how important it is to get plenty of fruit and vegetables into our diet, but what some people don’t know is how to properly prepare them. A lot of people typically boil their vegetables lifeless, this does nothing for the taste buds, and most importantly has taken a very nutritious piece of food and turned it into something with hardly anything left but a little bit of fiber.

Cooking them the wrong way can destroy their water-soluble vitamins such as Vitamin B and C. Minerals such as calcium, magnesium, iron, zinc, phosphorus, and potassium can also decline as much as 70%.

Here are the 3 best ways to prepare your vegetables:

Eat them Raw
Eating your vegetables raw is one of the best ways to retain all their amazing vitamins and live enzymes, and best yet, their juicy textures and flavors.  I know, you’re not a rabbit, and you find eating a raw carrot rather tedious. I get it. But why not try starting small, and make the effort to eat just one or two raw vegetables a day. Finding a healthy dipping sauce such as hummus or even a healthy yogurt dip can make them taste amazing and makes a fantastic low-calorie snack.
If you’re still not a fan of the “raw” then please keep reading.

Steam Your Vegetables
Although eating your vegetables raw is the best way to make sure you’re not killing any of the vitamins and enzymes in them, they can sometimes be a little hard for some to digest. Which is why gently cooking them can be easier on the stomach.
Additionally, some vegetables when cooked ever so gently can be even more beneficial for vitamin and mineral intake. Tomatoes, for example, contain a powerful antioxidant called Lycopene. When cooked, the lycopene becomes more available to the body, allowing a better absorption.

Stir-fry or Sauté
Going back to those carrots, by steaming them lightly or gently sautéing them in a bit of olive oil or coconut oil, is not only easier on the stomach, but it also helps the body absorb the wonderful antioxidants they contain. Carrots are packed with beta-carotene – a natural antioxidant that our body converts to Vitamin A. For the body to absorb it properly it needs a little bit of fat to go with it.

Now, when we talk about stir-frying or sautéing them we don’t mean drenching then in unhealthy oils or adding a bunch of MSG. We’re talking about gently putting them on the pan and cooking them for just a few minutes, just enough for it to be slightly tender but still retaining their vibrant colors.

In Conclusion
If you’re one of those people that have made it a habit to boil your vegetable unconscious, or if you’re having a hard time eating vegetables in the first place then you may consider doing yourself a favor by changing the way you prepare them.
Knowing how to cook our vegetables to ensure we’re getting as much nutrition as possible from them, is just as important as making our 5-a-day a priority.