FUNCTIONAL FOOD | Fresh Spring Salad
Today I wanted to share a recipe for a delicious fresh spring salad! It actually does not contain any greens–I don’t know if I can call it a salad–but it is made out of two simple and extremely nutritious ingredients: Beets and carrots. “Go, go! Antioxidant Force!” (Sorry, I was a big Power Rangers fan when I was a young pup 😊)
Beets are really good for you but don’t take my word for it. Beets have the ability to stimulate the liver’s detoxification processes. Their beautiful colors are due to the pigments betacyanin (in red/purple beets) and betaxanthins (in golden beets); both pigments are powerful cancer-fighting agents. Beets are rich in folate, fiber, magnesium, manganese, iron, vitamin C, phosphorous, and vitamin B6. The fiber in beets aids in bowel movements and in flushing out any extra cholesterol. It might come out the same color as it came in (I had to do a poop joke 😄).
Additionally, beets contain betaine, which promotes the production of hydrochloric acid (HCl): stomach acid which is essential for breaking down proteins and food.
For this recipe, I say go with golden beets. They have a much milder taste, (in my opinion: better taste) and they are in season right now! This recipe calls for using raw, uncooked beets in order to obtain full nutritional benefits without destroying any enzymes and vitamins, which are often destroyed by cooking and heating foods. Plus, it’s summer. So more fresh of everything, please!
Carrots hold their own as well! Carrots contain antioxidant compounds which can help protect against cardiovascular disease and cancer; their lutein and beta-carotene content also promotes good eyesight (especially night vision) and protection against senile cataracts and macular degeneration; they even help to protect against harmful UV rays.
Carrots are an amazing source of vitamin A, biotin (great for our hair), fiber, vitamin K; they also contain significant amounts of vitamin C, vitamin B6, thiamine, and potassium.
2 golden beets
3 tbsp hemp seeds (optional; they are an amazing source of omega 3-fatty acids and iron)
For the dressing:
Handful of dill
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tsp raw honey
1-2 tbsp apple cider vinegar (raw, unfiltered)
Peel the beets. Wash your carrots. Chop both beets and carrots into large chunks and shred them; ideally place them in a food processor that will shred them for you!
The dressing is dead easy. Simply add to a bowl a handful of chopped dill, 2 tsp Dijon mustard, the juice of 1 lemon, 2 tbsp of apple cider vinegar, and 2 tsp of raw honey. Mix together.
Mix dressing in with the salad. Top with an avocado and hemp seeds if you like, and there you have it!
Every couple of weeks, I will be posting nutrition and wellness advice, recipes, and interesting findings worth sharing with all of you. I know that we all have different interests and needs so I will try to cover different topics with every post. I would love to read your feedback so I encourage you to share your thoughts and/or questions in the comments section below.
If you would like to know more about me, please visit my website Alimental G.