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Are you familiar with the term “Nutrient dense”? It means that a food packs more nutrients by weight than other foods. So if you’re comparing a few apple slices and a twinkie, that weigh the same, the apple slices would be more nutrient dense. Make sense?

One of the most nutrient dense foods that you can consume are dark leafy greens. 

We’re talking about:

  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Arugula
  • Collards
  • Beet or turnip greens
  • Dandelion greens
  • Mustard greens

 

These greens are packed with vitamins and minerals including: vitamin A, vitamin C, antioxidants, fiber, folate, vitamin K, magnesium, calcium, iron and potassium.

**From a health perspective, you are boosting your metabolism, health, your immune system, your digestive health and much more.

**From a weight loss perspective, you’re gaining tons of nutrients and very few calories. You’re also getting good healthy fiber to improve digestion.

How to Eat More Dark Leafy Greens

So there are, as always, a few different approaches that you can take. First, I encourage you to experiment and try different greens. For example, eggs on top of a bed of fresh arugula is amazing and I love to fry eggs and put them on top of sauteed collards, kale, or spinach. But if greens for breakfast aren’t your jam, you can try them at lunchtime in a salad or as a side at dinner.

Plan A: Eat dark leafy greens daily. Create a habit of having greens every day and make it a simple part of your day. You might have, for example, a smoothie in the morning with a handful of spinach. Or with your eggs like me. 

Plan B: Eat Two servings of dark leafy greens each week. If you find that you’re struggling with the idea of eating greens every day, that’s fine. We’re all about working from where you are right now and taking small steps each day! So start with one or two servings this week. Add a serving each week until you’re having 5 servings of dark leafy greens a week. 

Homework

Mmm, dark leafy greens. What types of greens do you like? Try a variety this week. 

How do you like them prepared? Experiment with preparation. Do you like them cooked or raw? 

How will you incorporate them into your meals? Some options include:

  • Smoothies
  • Salads
  • Foundations for things like stir fry, sloppy joes, etc…
  • Sauteed (with bacon and onions! yum!)
  • As a wrap/on a wrap
  • There are so many different ways you can incorporate dark leafy greens into your diet. What’s your plan, Plan A or Plan B?

If Plan A – When do you plan on eating your dark leafy greens? How? For example, I usually have them sauteed with my morning eggs and then again in a salad for lunch.

If Plan B – Plan your meals for the week and choose two meals where you can incorporate dark leafy greens. (PS, I LOVE Real Plans for meal planning)

Write down what you need to do to make this step a reality. It’s easy in theory, eat dark leafy greens, but unless you have a plan in place and dark leafy greens in your refrigerator, it can become a hassle. I like to buy pre-washed bags of greens and keep them in the fridge, then it’s easy to throw a handful or two into a smoothie or into a pan.

 How will you celebrate success?

How will you add more leafy greens to next week? 

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