Fitness & Wellness

Change Your Lifestyle And Change Your Life

Change Your Lifestyle And Change Your Life

You can continue to go through life feeling tired, sick and disgusted with your body or you can change your lifestyle and by doing that, change your life. The definition of crazy is to continue doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting different outcomes. Isn’t it time that you took a look at how you’re living and what you’re doing or not doing for yourself, especially if it brings more satisfaction to your life? It’s not easy, but nothing worthwhile is ever easy. Changing habits you’ve had for years can be tough.

It all starts with healthy eating.

Even if you were raised eating healthy foods, it doesn’t mean you’ve continued the habit throughout life. There’s too many quick options available today that can lure you away from eating whole foods. You may have developed habits that you once only did on special occasions, like grabbing a quickie burger for a meal when you were rushed and had no other option. Now, you’ve replaced all the healthy meals with quick to fix processed foods. Start going back to foods that come from the garden or meat and animal products that comes from free range, organic or grass fed animals.

Learning how to eat healthy doesn’t happen overnight.

Focusing on the nutrients in food and ways to make your favorite foods more nutritious and less fattening are keys to eating healthy. Some of the changes will be easy, like substituting fresh fruit for a candy bar as a mid afternoon snack. Some will take some learning, such as cooking healthier and making changes like broiling, steaming, grilling or baking food rather than frying them. Making substitutions when baking, such as using applesauce to replace part of the oil or sugar in baked goods is another change. It takes work.

Speaking of changes, how about starting a program of regular exercise.

If you’ve never had a program of regular exercise, you probably don’t know where to start. That’s where personal trainers and boot camps can help. The most important part of this program is consistency. It’s making yourself get into the habit of regular exercise, so you’ll miss it when you don’t do it. Too often we allow our schedules to dictate our workout, where in reality, scheduling in a workout should be top priority.

  • Those two changes will reap huge benefits. You’ll start to have more energy, shed unwanted pounds, build more muscle tissue and feel great. It even helps build bone density and boost your immune system.
  • When you successfully make changes like this, you boost your self-confidence and self-esteem. That can create positive changes in all areas of your life.
  • If you’re overweight, have high blood pressure or pre-diabetes or type 2 diabetes, you’ll find you can control these conditions, often without the use of medication.
  • Always talk to your health care provider before starting a program of exercise. If you have a physical condition or limitation, share it with your personal trainer before you begin.

Will Exercise Help You Lose Fat

Will Exercise Help You Lose Fat

If you want to lose fat, not muscle tissue when you lose weight, exercise is important. However, knowing the right types of exercises to do is also important. There’s help in Commack, NY for anyone that wants to shed pounds, while maintaining and building muscle mass. The help is a professional personal trainer who designs a plan specifically for that goal and the individual’s needs and present fitness level. However, there are some generalizations that will work for almost anyone.

Strength training not only builds and maintains muscle mass, it burns fat.

Whether you lift weights or swing a kettlebell, strength training is definitely a fat burner. Not only do you burn calories while you’re doing it, it continues burning calories after you quit. Strength training also helps build and maintain muscle mass, unlike cardio workouts. Longer cardio workouts can even reduce the amount of muscle mass you have. The more muscle mass you have, the more calories your body burns, since muscle tissue requires more calories to maintain than fat tissue does.

Try a HIIT workout.

HIIT stands for high intensity interval training. It’s a process where you do short burst at maximum ability, approximately 30 seconds to one minutes, followed by a recovery time at half your normal workout rate. That period is normally double the time spent at maximum, 60 seconds to two minutes. You alternate this way for six to ten intervals. As your fitness improves, build on the time of each interval, but never forget the recovery period. This type of workout is extremely effective and a real fat burner. You can use any type of exercise, cardio or strength training, to get the desired effects.

Circuit training is also another way to maximize the fat-burning effects of exercise.

Circuit training is related to HIIT in how it works to burn fat, but still quite different in how it’s executed. Instead of varying the speed of the exercise, you combine a series of exercises that you complete one after another. You don’t rest between the sets and that’s what makes it harder. The heart has to work hard with the rate elevated. That makes it an efficient calorie burner while you’re doing it and for hours afterward. It doesn’t matter which exercises you use as you go from station to station and it could be body weight exercises, weights, cardio or specific calisthenics. As you get more proficient, your program can become more advanced.

  • No matter what exercise methods you choose to burn fat, you can’t out-exercise a bad diet.
  • Any exercise will help you lose weight, however some are simply better than others are. Even adding a long walk to your daily routine can help you shed pounds and get into shape.
  • If you have a health issue, it’s best to first discuss your plan to start exercising with your health care professional and then seek the services of a personal trainer who can design a plan specifically for your special needs.
  • The quickest types of fat-burning exercises are circuit training and HIIT. They accomplish more in a half hour than most workouts do in an hour or longer.

What Is Primal Living

What Is Primal Living

If you take off your shoes at the end of the day and get a huge feeling of relief, you may be ready for primal living. Primal living isn’t going back to scavenging the countryside for berries and small creatures to eat. However, it is taking a step back and noticing that not all the changes in the modern world are good for our health. One simple part of primal living is going barefoot. Your feet were meant to be exposed to the ground with toes wiggling in the grass. One big movement called grounding, endorses walking barefoot outside, saying it brings serenity and peace by neutralizing the energy with the earths electrons.

Much of our manufactured food is good—if you’re a machine.

There’s so many additives in today’s foods, some of which are petroleum based—which is great if you’re the tin woodsman and need a little oil. However, it’s a proven fact that the American diet is killing us with diabetes and obesity running rampant. High fructose corn syrup is one example of food messing with your body. It’s cheap to use, so it’s the sweetener of choice and is in almost all processed foods. It stops the hormones that tell you that you’re feeling full, so you keep on eating and eating until before you know it, you’re huge! Primal living gets back to eating whole foods, foods that are in their natural state. It also promotes eating organic, since pesticides aren’t good for any living creature.

Do you think your hour of exercise every other day will keep you fit?

Guess what, you need more than that. Studies show that if you have a sedentary job where you sit more than an hour at a time, you might be shortening your life, even if you exercise. While exercise helps in order to live your healthiest, you need to get up and move every 50 minutes for a few minutes to offset that sedentary lifestyle. Hunter-gatherers moved continuously at a slow pace across the land. They definitely weren’t split second fast as they searched for food while they traveled. Even though they were slower, the continuous movement kept them healthier and at their best.

Primal living doesn’t baby anyone.

It doesn’t matter whether you were a man or woman, you carried your share of the load. Women carried babies all day and often firewood and food. Everyone helped move heavy items, like large prey and wood for shelters. Lifting is what kept them strong. Today, we no longer do the type of physical labor that was necessary for survival, so core muscles are weaker and there’s more back pain. There’s a reason strength training is so important. Not only does it signal the creation of growth hormones, it keeps the muscles and bones strong.

  • When cavemen existed, there were dangers everywhere. Whether it was from another tribe or a wild animal, running was also part of their life. Add occasional running to your list of primal living.
  • Who sleeps anymore? Nobody it seems. We’re getting less and less sleep, either because of work or all the modern inventions that keep us up at night. Primal living means you turn off the lights and get adequate sleep.
  • If you want to start easy on primal living, take a walk in the grass barefoot on a sunny day—without sun blocks. Use good sense, with a short exposure to the sun if your skin is pale and extending it as you tan. Your body needs the sunlight to make vitamin D.
  • Being aware of your environment and on the alert for danger kept primitive man safe. It’s something that modern man (and woman) could better do better. Put down your cellphone and walk with it IN your pocket.

Positive Motivation

Positive Motivation

You can accomplish anything in life with enough time and positive motion. While some of life’s goals may require more time than a lifetime offers, there are ones that can be accomplished by anyone with a plan that works for them and determination to carryout that plan. Getting fit, losing weight and facing life as a healthier person with more endurance, strength and flexibility may seem difficult at first, but if you stick with it, it can be done.

“Put one foot in front of the other” is a message from a children’s song.

I love to Christmas programs and the messages of hope and love. One particular program, Santa Clause is Coming to Town, featured a song with inspiring lyrics. “Put one foot in front of the other and soon you’ll be walking across the floor. Put one foot in front of the other and soon you’ll be walking out the door.” I thought to myself when I heard it that it could be about exercise. Just do it and before you know it, you’ll be in shape. I read a motivating story about a man that was extremely obese, to the point that he could only walk a few steps. He became motivated by the possibility of never walking again and daily took those few steps, until they became a few more and finally, today, has lost more than three fourths his body weight and is running marathons. That’s the power of motivation.

Workout with a friend to stay motivated.

If you can buddy up to workout, you’ll find that it works better. Not only do you have someone else holding you accountable, you also have someone to help make the workout more interesting. That’s one reason group classes work so well. Not only does the trainer provide motivation, the whole group does too. It’s far more fun and let’s face it, having fun is truly motivating, too.

Track your workout and your progress.

It’s easy to say that you’ll workout, but you’ll be more likely to stick to a program if you track your workout and your results. Tracking is nothing more than noting the number of repetitions and sets. If you’re using weights, the amount of weight involved. It makes it more of a game, rather than a chore and you’ll get motivation as you see your progress improving.

  • Snap a selfie once every two weeks. Either take a selfie or have a friend take a full body picture of you in the same clothing and in the same place. Compare pictures as you progress.
  • Give yourself a reward. Don’t make it a food reward if you’re trying to lose weight, but a reward of a new outfit works.
  • Keep a workout jar. Every time you workout, pitch a dollar in the jar that you can spend anyway you want after three months. As the money builds, so will your motivation.
  • Break up your workout to smaller bites throughout the day. One client hated to start a long workout, so on her days away from the gym, broke the workout to four-ten minute sessions. She wasn’t nearly as reluctant to start.

Why Artificial Sweeteners Raise Your Risk Of Diabetes

Why Artificial Sweeteners Raise Your Risk Of Diabetes

Kicking the sugar habit altogether is tough, so many people choose to go the route of using artificial sweeteners instead of sugar. Some artificial sweeteners come with side effects that range from severe headaches to weight gain and even cardiovascular disease. However, a recent study showed an even more severe problem, they may also increase your risk of diabetes.

Artificial sweeteners are actually sweeter than sugar.

Artificial sweeteners are actually sweeter than sugar and train the tastebuds to accept sweeter and sweeter foods. Like an addictive drug, eventually, the only food that will taste sweet are those laden with sugar or more artificial sweeteners. Since the body isn’t receiving calories, there’s no point of satiation. To fill that need, often people accompany the drink with high calorie foods. Everyone has seen someone or done this themselves, order a diet drink and a huge order of fries, high calorie dessert or a double burger. While you might be saving calories on the drink, your body still wants calories with the sweetness, which can cause overeating.

Artificial sweeteners interfere with metabolic functioning.

One study showed that artificial sweeteners consumed daily increased the risk of metabolic syndrome by 35 percent, while it also increased the risk of type 2 diabetes by a whopping 67 percent. The potential for type 2 diabetes begins as glucose intolerance. Studies show that daily consumption of drinks containing these sweeteners also can result in higher blood glucose levels. One theory is that it occurs when you frequently prepare the body to digest sugar, via the taste buds, but there are no calories available to digest. That occurs when you ingest artificial sweeteners that have a high sugar taste, but little if any calories.

There are artificial sweeteners everywhere.

You may immediately think of diet colas and other diet drinks or that little blue, yellow or pink packet you put in your coffee or tea, what you may not realize is that there are so many other foods that contain artificial sweeteners, so you may be ingesting far more than you think you are on a daily basis. Things as innocuous as children’s chewable vitamins, toothpaste and mouthwash may contain them. You probably already know about chewing gum and even some frozen yogurt or other desserts. Breakfast cereals, salad dressings, alcoholic beverages, processed snack foods and candy also has it in. Some processed meat products, yogurt and baked goods have it in, too. If you’re trying to live a healthier life and give up smoking, guess what, nicotine gum has artificial sweeteners, also.

  • A recent study on aspartame found that it might impair memory, increase oxidative stress in the brain and even cause bouts of mania. It’s especially bad for pregnant women or women who are breastfeeding, since it can predispose babies to metabolic syndrome disorders when they get older and obesity.
  • Artificial sweeteners may exacerbate symptoms in people with Crohn’s symptoms.
  • Flying Safety, the United States Air Force official publication, warned US Air Force pilots to avoid food and drink containing Aspartame, no matter how small the amount. According to the publication, “Asparatame has been investigated as a possible cause of brain tumors, mental retardation, birth defects, epilepsy, Parkinson’s Disease, Fibromyalgia, and Diabetes.”
  • Besides messing with the balance of gut bacteria, as noted before, artificial sweeteners can effect metabolic functioning, which includes more than just maintaining blood glucose levels, but also maintaining normal blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

Reasons To Eat More Oatmeal

Reasons To Eat More Oatmeal

If you’ve ever scanned the grocery cereal section, you’ll see loads of options from sugar loaded sweet cereal to cook and serve cereal, like oatmeal. While there are all types of oatmeal available, they all have some health benefits, based on the amount of processing. However, some highly processed oatmeal with added sugar have negatives that may outweigh the benefits. If you want to improve your health you should eat more oatmeal that’s closer to its natural form.

All oat groats are processed.

I love the term oat groats, it’s just plain fun to say. It’s the name for the whole oat, before processing. Even though you hear that processing is bad, oat groats have to be processed in some form to use. Steel cut—Irish oats—are the least processed. They’re nothing more than the whole oat groats cut into small pieces. It has the most soluble fiber that fills you up, but can’t be processed by the body, so it won’t fill you out. Scottish oats are next in line. They’re similar to Irish oats, but instead of being cut, they’re ground and have a smoother texture. Rolled oats, the kind you normally see on the shelf, are steamed first then rolled to flatten. They’re higher on the Glycemic Index—GI—because they digest faster. Quick oats are steamed higher and rolled thinner, making them higher on the GI. Instant oats are processed even more, higher on the GI and contain ingredients that will pack on the pounds.

The best way to eat oat groats is Irish or Scottish oats, with rolled oats slightly behind for weight loss and controlling blood sugar levels.

Steel cut oats—Irish oats—are the best form to buy, with Scottish oats a close second. However, if saving money is just as important, rolled oats are a good substitute. One of the benefits of eating oats is its ability to help control blood sugar. The insoluble fiber, beta-glucan, forms a thick gel that lows the absorption and delays the glucose from entering the blood stream. The more processed forms have far less fiber and the instant oats may also contain higher amounts of sugar. As far as being a great benefit for weight loss, if you eat more instant oats than the rolled oats or better kind, you’ll probably pack on the pounds.

Keep you cholesterol levels in check and are rich in antioxidants.

It’s been known for some time that eating oatmeal can lower your cholesterol levels. Lowering those high cholesterol levels can protect your heart from damage, but only if it’s the LDL level–the bad cholesterol. The beta-glucan fiber does just that and lowers the total cholesterol in the process. Oatmeal also contains antioxidants to help prevent LDL oxidation that causes inflammation and damages tissues, which increases the risk for both strokes and heart attacks.

  • Whole oats contain avenanthramides, which are exclusive to oats. Avenanthramides can increase nitric oxide levels and lower blood pressure. Higher nitric oxide levels also boost your mitochondria.
  • Oatmeal boosts your nutrition. Just a half a cup of dry oats contains 191% RDI for Manganese, 41% for Phosphorus, 34% Magnesium, 24% for Copper, 20% for Iron, 20% of Zinc, 39% of thiamin RDI, 10% of pantothenic acid, 11% of Folate and trace amounts of B6, B3, Calcium and potassium.
  • It may take a little longer to cook, but the benefits from steel cut, Scottish and rolled oats are worth the effort, especially when you’re trying to lose weight.

Benefits Of Hiring A Personal Trainer

Benefits Of Hiring A Personal Trainer

I’m often asked about the benefits of hiring a personal trainer by new clients or those that are interested in starting our program but haven’t been sold on the idea of it yet. Of course, I’m definitely convinced that trainers help tremendously, or I wouldn’t have chosen this occupation. The most obvious reason is that you’re held accountable when you use the services of a personal trainer. Just like you’re more apt to go to an appointment of any kind, the appointment with the trainer is an extra incentive to go to the gym. If you don’t show, someone knows. It’s not like being on your own where people have no idea whether you worked out that day or not.

Trainers are especially good for people that have no idea where to start.

There are so many conflicting articles on the internet about the absolute best diet and best workout that’s sure to help you shed tons of weight. Unfortunately, some of these aren’t back by science and some of those diets, the fad diets like the cabbage diet, have little or no validity for long term use. As a trainer, I spent long hours learning everything about fitness and healthy eating. I still continue to do so, because every day something new is learned on how to stay fitter and healthier. I read, absorb the good information and discard the trash, so I can offer the most up-to-date information that will help my clients get fitter faster. Using a trainer takes the guess work out of fitness. I do all the studying so you don’t have to do it.

You’ll get a personalized plan from a trainer.

It doesn’t matter whether you could enter a Ms. or Mr. Universe contest or barely workout by pressing the remote buttons, you’ll have a plan that is geared to your needs, level of fitness and goals. If you have a health issue, let me know. Make sure you alert your physician of your plans for exercise to make sure it’s okay first. If the condition requires me to modify a workout, it’s never a problem. You’ll always be working toward peak performance, but never beyond your capacity.

I won’t give you a diet, but I will teach you how to eat healthier.

Eating healthy helps you lose weight but it’s not a diet. That’s because diets don’t work. They always end, either in success or failure. Then you go back to old eating habits that packed on the pounds in the first place. Learning to eat healthier is a lifestyle change that means you’ll never have to diet again. You’ll learn how to substitute one food for another or make the best choices when you’re out to eat. You’ll be amazed at how delicious healthy food can taste and how you’re never feeling hungry or deprived. If you have a favorite high calorie food, you don’t have to live without it. Just eat it less frequently and in smaller portions.

  • As a trainer, I make sure that you learn the right way to do each exercise. Not only does it boost the benefits of the exercise, it helps minimize injuries.
  • You’ll always be working toward your top performance. As you workout, the exercises will become easier. That’s because your fitness level has increased. That’s when I change the workout to match your new fitness level.
  • You’ll never get bored working out with a trainer. We constantly change your workout, not only to avoid boredom, but also to avoid plateauing, which can occur when your workout doesn’t change.
  • Whenever I find something new that improves my client’s health, I’m ready to use it. For instance, the cryotherapy at LI Live is one example.

What's Your Excuse For Not Working Out?

What’s Your Excuse For Not Working Out?

No matter who you are and how dedicated to fitness you are, until you make working out a habit, it’s pretty tough to stick with an exercise program. There are so many reasons people fail to follow through with a workout program. You may think your excuse for not working out is legitimate, but once you take a closer look, you’ll find ways to work with it and get into the rhythm of exercising regularly. Once working out becomes a habit, just like brushing your teeth or showering, you’ll feel uncomfortable not doing it regularly.

One of the top reasons for not working out is lack of time.

Some of the busiest people in the world make time for exercise, primarily because they know it will make them more efficient and get more done the rest of the day. Everyone has the same 24 hours, what they do with it makes all the difference in the world. Your schedule may be more packed than other people, with demands on your time few can imagine. However, you can make time by breaking up the workout into manageable segments. Create workouts you can do any time, anywhere or ask your trainer to do it. When you have ten to fifteen minutes get moving. Do it three or four times a day. Walking at lunch, tracking your workout, putting it in your schedule or doing it early in the morning helps.

Staying with a plan, any plan, for working out seems impossible.

You may have tried before and failed to continue your workout. That can lead to a lot of self-doubt and disappointment. You don’t have to do it all at once. Start small by increasing how much you walk. Get a pedometer to count your steps. Put your workout in your planner and make it top priority. Don’t attempt to do too much too soon. You’ll be super sore and that is discouraging. Don’t try to do everything at once, such as lose weight or eat healthier when you’re starting a workout program. Focus just on working out.

You don’t know how to workout or where to start.

Procrastination often occurs when people aren’t comfortable with their knowledge and worry they’ll do all the wrong things. The good news is that there’s loads of help available. Whether you choose to use the services of a personal trainer or get advice and help from video or internet programs, help is always available.

  • You may think you can’t afford a personal trainer or gym. You’ll be amazed at how inexpensive it can be. We offer a triple training test drive that runs under $20 that can get you started.
  • You may be using your family responsibilities as your excuse. Sure, you do need to spend more time with the family, but that doesn’t mean it has to be in front of the TV. Get active with the kids or exercise at times they’re asleep, like early in the morning.
  • You may have problems maintaining your motivation. Track your progress. Set goals and reward yourself when you achieve them. Getting a workout buddy is also a way to stick to your workout plan and help them in the process.
  • You may really hate working out. Maybe that’s because you’ve never found the perfect exercise for you. If you’ve gone to the gym and moved from machine to machine with mind numbing obedience, you’ve missed a lot of fun. Get active with something you’ll enjoy and that will make you want to workout to have more energy to do even more.

You Don't Have To Lose Muscle Mass As You Age

You Don’t Have To Lose Muscle Mass As You Age

Most people think that getting older means getting frail, but that’s not necessarily true. While the average person will lose more muscle mass as they get older, most of the problem occurs due to inactivity and lack of exercise. It is true that you have to put in effort to maintain muscle mass and work even harder to build it, but with effort people can be just as fit at fifty as they were at twenty. There are some well known people that prove you don’t have to lose muscle mass as you age. Actress and fitness video producer Jane Fonda looks fabulous at 80. Jack Lalane, fitness guru who said, “People don’t die of old age, they die of neglect,” looked fit well into his 90s. You don’t have to be a celebrity to be fit in your senior years. There are ordinary people doing extraordinary things every day, but only because of consistently making fitness a priority. Charles Eugster, 96 year old runner and Ernestine Shepherd, 92 year old body builder are examples.

Most people peak at their 40s, when it comes to muscle mass.

Reasons people start losing muscles occurs with changes in hormone levels, loss of nerve cells that cause muscles to move, decreased ability to convert protein to energy and lower appetite and caloric intake. You don’t have to sit and accept it…In fact, sitting is probably one of the reasons the muscle disappeared! You do have to work a bit harder for maintenance. You also have to feed your body the right nutrition, drink more water and get adequate sleep, beside working out.

It all starts with consistency.

Don’t expect to start by doing fingertip pushups if you’ve been a couch potato, no matter what your age. Start today where you are and aim for the next level of fitness. If you can only walk to the corner, walk there and aim for two steps tomorrow. If you’re unable to do a full half hour of exercise, do what you can or break it up to several 20 minute sessions throughout the day, but do it every day, every week without fail.

Put weight training on your schedule.

Running and walking is good, but it won’t stimulate the body to build muscles. Only weight training will do that. While it may be natural to lose muscle tissue, amounting to 3 to 10 percent per decade once you hit 50, you can slow that progress and even reverse it with hard work and strength training. Strength training should be on your schedule at least two to three times every week with two days between sessions for recuperation.

  • Eat more protein,but spread it out throughout the day. For every pound of weight, younger people need approximately 1.8 grams of protein and seniors need about 2.6 grams to build muscle mass. Eat healthy and get good sources of protein.
  • Take time to relax and get plenty of sleep. You need adequate sleep to rebuild your body and keep your motivation going.
  • Schedule your workout. Make exercise part of your daily schedule. It’s as important as any doctors appointment or business meeting. It keeps you healthier and more alert so you can be more successful in business and stay out of the doctor’s office.
  • If you have physical limitations or health conditions, don’t give up. Work with a personal trainer who will create a program designed specifically for your needs.

Some Healthy Vegetables Most People Don't Often Eat

Some Healthy Vegetables Most People Don’t Often Eat

There’s a whole list of healthy vegetables most people don’t often eat, which also taste delicious, especially when you have the know-how to make them part of your menu. Some of the top veggies that make the list aren’t exotic at all. In fact, you probably see them every day. Broccoli and cauliflower are two of these. Both of them are cruciferous vegetables that can help prevent a number of diseases. They’re high in vitamin C and delicious when cooked properly. Sautee the cauliflower with olive oil adding walnuts, turmeric and tomato sauce or bake it in the oven coated with garlic and seasoned with your favorite choice of herbs.

Beets are considered a super food.

There’s nothing yummier than freshly steamed beets, or easier to make. Just clean the outside, clip off the leaves and steam it for about 20 minutes, depending on the size of the beet. Trim off the top and slide off the outside skin. DELICIOUS! Some beets are sweet enough to eat this way, so for those, peel the skin and roast them like potatoes. Beets are considered a superfood with loads of fiber, potassium, folate, and potassium. It has potent antioxidant power that will help keep you healthier.

Try parsnips or a rutabaga with your meals.

In the New York area, we’re lucky enough to be close to the supply of fresh parsnips and rutabagas. These fall veggies are root crops and taste delicious. Parsnips taste a bit like a cross between carrots and potatoes, while rutabagas, which are actually a cross between cabbage and turnips. They’re like a carrot without the sweetness. Consider the folate, potassium, vitamins C, E and K, calcium, iron, manganese, magnesium, phosphorus and zinc in parsnips and you’ll want them in your diet. Rutabagas are rich in antioxidants, boost your immune system, improve digestion and are a rich source of potassium. The name is fun to say too. You can eat both raw or cooked, in a favorite salad, stir fry or baked.

Radicchio is a nutrient rich leafy vegetable that also thrives in our climate.

It’s amazing but true, radicchio is a member of the daisy family. It’s a type chicory, that has ties to Belgian endive. Radicchio is packed with vitamin K, a nutrient your body can’t store. It has vitamins A, B1, B3, B5, B6, B9, E and C, as well as copper, calcium, magnesium, phosphorous, iron, potassium and selenium. The best way to eat radicchio is in a salad, where it adds delicious zest! You can add it to soup, omelets and rice dishes, bake it or saute it.

  • Are Brussels sprouts on your menu? Some people don’t like the strong taste of cooked Brussels sprouts, but have you ever tried these miniature cabbages in a salad? (They’re not really tiny cabbages, but do come from the same family.)
  • Kohlrabi contains high amounts of vitamins A, C, B-complex, K, potassium, copper, manganese, iron and calcium. It’s yummy as a dipping veggie and also delicious cooked.
  • Eggplant has high levels of antioxidants, fiber, magnesium, potassium and vitamin B6. Slice it in strips and use those strips to substitute for lasagna noodles.
  • Asparagus will help boost your mood and provides a high level of B vitamins. It’s delicious almost anyway you make it. I love it on the grill brushed with butter from pasture fed cows and sprinkled with lemon juice or lemony herbs.