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What to eat this spring

Spring is well and truly upon us which often means lots of talk about detoxing and diets.

But instead of falling into the trap of diets, why not focus on boosting your nutrition intake with some of the delicious new season produce that’s hitting the shelves right now? Adding seasonal vegetables and fruit to your diet is the perfect way to get both value for money, great quality and a variety of nutrients in your diet.

Here are three new season vegetables and fruit to add to your shopping this week:

Avocado

After a couple of months of high prices or an absence of avocados on the supermarket shelves, new season avocados are in store and at a great price.

Unlike most vegetables, avocados are high fat.  Now that’s a good thing, as they’re high in the heart healthy monounsaturated fats.  They’re also highly nutritious.  Half an avocado provides you with 3.6g of dietary fibre, 27 per cent of your recommended daily intake for folate, and also provides some vitamin C, iron, vitamin B6, niacin, and potassium.

Avocados also contain the antioxidant called luetin which is thought to be beneficial for eye health.

Avocado makes the perfect substitute for butter– it’s creamy, delicious and nutritious as well as heart healthy.  There’s some yummy recipe inspiration for avocado here as well.

Asparagus

While we are used to seeing most vegetables year round, asparagus is one of the few vegetables that we tend to only see over the spring and early summer.  Asparagus is one of the highest vegetable sources of folate, a B vitamin needed to create DNA and other genetic material and for cell division.

It’s also a source of vitamin C, vitamin K and riboflavin and provides a significant source of potassium which is important for healthy blood pressure. Asparagus also contains a range of phytochemicals which are beneficial for health.

Asparagus is delicious lightly steamed, stir fried, baked and it’s also yummy cooked on the bbq.

While it’s delicious by itself, here’s some yummy recipes using asparagus to try.

Oranges

Oranges are available all year round, but they’re not always New Zealand grown.  NZ navel oranges are in now season and they are available at a great price too.

When we think of the nutritional value of oranges, vitamin C always comes to mind.  One orange provides an excellent source of vitamin C but they also provide other nutrients too.  Oranges contain some B vitamins, vitamin A and even a little calcium.

Oranges are delicious as a snack, but they’re also good added to smoothies and cut up in salads alongside avocado and leafy greens.

Final thoughts

Eating plenty of vegetables and including fruits in your diet is something we can all benefit from for health and well-being.  By shopping seasonally you’ll get both value for money and great quality too.

First published: Oct 2016



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