Sandy Dalis

0e42335c18a3e68b65ad71e95419b88a

The Benefits of Eating Vegetables in Season this Summer

Hope your summer is off to a great start! Summer is a time for sun, fun and delicious seasonal vegetables. Whether you’re grilling out or making a fresh salad, there are so many wonderful summer veggies to choose from. Which are your favorite?

Have you ever wondered why certain vegetables are more abundant in certain seasons?  I find it amazing how nature’s produce cycle actually supports our body’s needs, and gently leads us from season to season. For example, our bodies require more water in the summer months, and summer vegetables, such as zucchini, tomatoes, and cucumbers, help us stay hydrated and cool. In the fall, transition veggies, such as root vegetables, help us acclimate to the upcoming cooler months. Pretty neat, right?

There are many reasons to eat seasonally (and locally, if you can). Seasonal eating is kinder to the environment, requiring fewer pesticides and chemicals to nurture growth. Eating within the season also reduces the need for preservatives. Seasonal foods are grown locally, which reduces fuel and transportation costs – often called “food mileage” or “food’s carbon footprint.” And, if it’s not being shipped from where the veggies are in season (most likely from overseas), it doesn’t contain overseas contaminates –  just because a pesticide is illegal in the U.S. doesn’t mean foreign countries have the same policies on produce. In addition, seasonal veggies can grow naturally in the optimal weather, providing more antioxidants for our good health. And it just tastes better when it’s naturally grown and harvested at the right time!

Here’s a list of delicious vegetables to enjoy this summer:

VEGETABLE FUN FACT CONTAINS AWESOME BENEFITS
Artichoke The artichoke is the 4th most antioxidant-rich food in the world! Fiber Aids in digestion and regulates blood sugar levels
Antioxidants Is good for your heart and may help lower the risk of infection
Protein Used to build and repair muscle tissue
Folate Protects your heart, helps maintain a healthy pregnancy, boosts cognitive function
Arugula Though a recent newcomer to the U.S., arugula has been around since Biblical times. Antioxidants Is good for your heart and may help lower the risk of infection
Vitamin A
(beta-carotene)
Promotes healthy skin, boosts the immune system and is good for eye health.
Kaempferol Aids in fighting diseases
Asparagus The cooking water of asparagus can be used as a wash to treat acne! Folate Protects your heart, helps maintain a healthy pregnancy, boosts cognitive function
Vitamin C Protects against immune system deficiencies
Potassium Aids in nerve and muscle function
Inulin Aids in digestion
Antioxidants Is good for your heart and may help lower the risk of infection
Protein Used to build and repair muscle tissue
Beets The entire beet is edible – even its leaves and roots! Fiber Aids in digestion and regulates blood sugar levels
Folate Protects your heart, helps maintain a healthy pregnancy, boosts cognitive function
Manganese Helps prevent osteoporosis and inflammation
Vitamin C Protects against immune system deficiencies
Potassium Aids in nerve and muscle function
Cucumbers Cucumbers are amazing thirst quenchers! Lignans Helps aid inflammation
Vitamin C Protects against immune system deficiencies
Potassium Aids in nerve and muscle function
Eggplant Eggplants aren’t actually a vegetable – they’re a berry! Manganese Helps prevent osteoporosis and inflammation
Thiamin Provides energy to the body by helping convert carbohydrates to energy.
Fiber Aids in digestion and regulates blood sugar levels
Folate Protects your heart, helps maintain a healthy pregnancy, boosts cognitive function
Vitamin K Helps blood to clot, plays essential role in building strong bones and helps prevent heart disease
Protein Used to build and repair muscle tissue
Onion If rubbed on your skin, onions can help increase blood circulation! Fiber Aids in digestion and regulates blood sugar levels
Vitamin C Protects against immune system deficiencies
Folate Protects your heart, helps maintain a healthy pregnancy, boosts cognitive function
Potassium Aids in nerve and muscle function
Manganese Helps prevent osteoporosis and inflammation
Tomato Cooked tomatoes are more nutritious than raw tomatoes! Fiber Aids in digestion and regulates blood sugar levels
Vitamin C Protects against immune system deficiencies
Vitamin A Plays an important role in bone growth
Vitamin K Helps blood to clot, plays essential role in building strong bones and helps prevent heart disease
Potassium Aids in nerve and muscle function
Manganese Helps prevent osteoporosis and inflammation
Antioxidants Is good for your heart and may help lower the risk of infection
Zucchini As a squash, zucchini is one of the “3 Sister” crops planted by the Native Americans (corn, bean, and squash)! Vitamin B2 Promotes overall growth and good health by converting carbohydrates, proteins and fats into energy.
Vitamin C Protects against immune system deficiencies
Potassium Aids in nerve and muscle function and blood pressure
Fiber Aids in digestion and regulates blood sugar levels
Protein Used to build and repair muscle tissue

For the nutritional value of more seasonal vegetables in your region, check out the Seasonal Food Guide. https://www.seasonalfoodguide.org/

Close Menu