Tagged: Beta-Carotene

Keep It Seasonal: Pumpkins

Pumpkins:  healthy, not scary!

Pumpkins: healthy, not scary!

Pumpkins are more than just props to ward off evil spirits on chilly October nights.  The popular Halloween gourd also happens to be ultra-versatile, ultra-delicious and ultra-healthy.  According to this article from the Huffington Post, pumpkin contains over 200% of your daily recommended intake of Vitamin A, which is – like other orange-colored vegetables – converted from beta-carotene.  Even better, pumpkin seeds are nutritional powerhouses as well, containing magnesium, zinc, and plant-based Omega-3 fats, which combine to offer a wide range of benefits to your heart and immune system.

Photo courtesy of TLC’s Pumpkin Patch Pictures.

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Kathryn Tamblyn, CN: Sweet Potato… Juice?

Kathryn Tamblyn's Sweet Potato Juice.

Kathryn Tamblyn’s Sweet Potato Juice

That’s right! Sweet potato juice is a delicious, nutrient-packed beverage that’s perfect for fall. Sweet potatoes and carrots are filled with beta carotene which promotes eye health and beautiful skin. Apple and ginger are great detoxifiers. Coconut increases your body’s absorption of beta carotene, stabilizes blood sugar, boosts metabolism and tastes amazing.

What are you waiting for? Trust me, you’ll be hooked (and glowing) after your first glass.

Ingredients
– 1 sweet potato
– 4 carrots
– 1 apple
– 2 oz/3 inches ginger root
– 1 tbsp coconut flesh or coconut butter
– 1/4 tsp cinnamon
– pinch of Himalayan salt (optional)

NCI5_POTATODirections
1. Juice sweet potato, carrots, apple and ginger in your juicer.
2. Transfer the juice to a blender.
3. Add coconut and cinnamon
4. Blend for 10 seconds
5. Pour + enjoy!

Kathryn TamblynKathryn Tamblyn is a Certified Nutritionist based out of Los Angeles, CA.  Her approach to healthy eating includes eating nutritiously dense, organic whole foods and green smoothies, a daily yoga and meditation practice, love and travel.  Connect with her on Twitter @KathrynTamblyn or visit her website KathrynTamblyn.com.

Keep It Seasonal: Sweet Potatoes Pack Quite a Beta-Carotene Punch

Steam your sweet potatoes to maximize health benefits.

Steam your sweet potatoes to maximize health benefits.

No vegetable in nature – not even the carrot for which it is named – packs as big a beta-carotene punch as the sweet potato.

According to this WebMD article, beta-carotene is a carotenoid that the body can quickly convert to vitamin A, which is key to healthy skin, strong immunity and good vision.  It’s also an antixodant that protects the body from free radicals, a which lowers one’s risk for cancer and heart disease.

To get the most from the sweet potato’s long list of health benefits, steam or boil and serve with a little olive oil.  According to this article from The Worlds Healthiest Foods, just 3-5 grams of fat per meal (which comes from olive oil) can significantly increase the body’s uptake of beta-carotene from sweet potatoes.

Photo courtesy of Coconut Curry Sweet Potato Casserole from Dulcet.