Autumn | immunity | Nutrition

Your Fall Produce Guide

Give your immune system a boost with a bounty of antioxidant rich foods now that are now in season (or will be very soon!).

Acorn Squash

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Acorn squash is a great source of Vitamin C and fiber. Research found that Vitamin C could decrease at the length up cold like symptoms as much as one and a half days! Acorn squash tastes great when baked, blended in soups, or atop salads.

Helpful tip: Acorn Squash can keep fresh up to 3 months when stored at a cool temperature.

Try out a few new recipes using nutritious acorn squash 🙂

Betty Crocker’s Acorn Squash and Apple Soup

 

Asian Pear

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I personally love the smell of pears. The best part is when your shopping for pears, it is helpful if you pick up the pear and smell it. The most fragrant pears are ready to eat! Asian pears are a good source of Lutein and Zeaxanthin. These are phytonutrients that reduce the risk of developing cataracts and age-related macular degeneration. It is best to eat Asian pears raw to best harness its nutrients.

Helpful tip: Asian pears can be stored up to 3 months in the refrigerator

Persimmons

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If you’ve never have tasted a persimmon, you’re missing out! Persimmons look like they are a cousin of a tomato…but orange and sweet. Persimmons when eaten raw provide a decent amount of Vitamin C. To keep your skin, bones, teeth, and cartilage healthy, Vitamin C is essential.

Helpful tip: Persimmons should be eaten raw. They pair great in salads or on top yogurt. Once they are ripe they don’t last very long so eat up!

Swiss Chard

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Swiss chard is probably one of the most vibrant vegetables I’ve ever seen. The vibrancy of the colors are an indicator of its nutritional powerhouse! Swiss chard is another great source of magnesium, Vitamins A and C. Magnesium has many function in the body. It’s important for the body to metabolize because it is needed for overall nerve, muscle, and heart function.

Helpful tip: avoid swiss chard with dull colored leaves (tan, yellow, or brown). Look for a deep green color.

Sautéed Swiss Chard w/ Parmesan Cheese

Pomegranate

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A sweet, juicy pomegranate is so yummy and healthy! Pomegranates contain seeds called arils. Inside the arils are copious amounts of antioxidants, vitamins, and fiber. Pomegranates grow in drier climates. Some studies show positive heart health benefits from drinking pomegranate juice.

Helpful tip: when shopping for a pomegranate, try looking for round shaped and heavy for size. Based off my experience, they are more juicy that way.

 

Brussels Sprouts

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Growing up, my Mom did not like brussels sprouts and I was not introduced to them until I started grocery shopping and cooking for myself. My Mom described brussels sprouts as tiny, little cabbages that tasted gross. These little cabbage like vegetables are anything but gross in my opinion! They taste so good when steamed, roasted, or pan fried. They taste great with other flavors like garlic or a little bit of bacon. Yum!

Helpful tip: Brussel sprouts taste best when fresh on a stalk. Frozen, steamable brussels sprouts are just as tasty in a pinch.

Recipes: Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Sautéed Brussels Sprouts with Bacon & Onions

Cauliflower

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Cauliflower largely is thought to be the color white. Cauliflower can be found in the colors as purple, green, and orange! Be adventurous by trying out a new color. Obviously, avoid cauliflower that has dark brown or black spots. Cauliflower can keep you healthy this fall because of it’s high Vitamin C content. It is also a good source of folate. Folate is an important nutrient especially for pregnant women.

Helpful hint: Store cauliflower in a bag up to 5 days in the refrigerator.

Recipes: Aimee’s Mashed Cauliflower ‘Potatoes’

Figs

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If I had to pick a favorite fruit…It would be a fig! I absolutely love the honey like taste figs have to offer. Fig cookies aren’t the same and cover up the natural goodness with additives and sugar. Figs technically are in season at the end of the summer through October. Figs taste great when paired with cheese (goat cheese) and wine. Figs are a great source of potassium and fiber.

Helpful hint: Figs spoil quickly, eat them soon after purchase

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