8 Foods to Add to Your Salad Bar

gut health recipes May 26, 2021

Salad - if you follow me on Instagram you know I’m a fan of #bigasssalads. A bowl full of leafy greens, a simple protein, and healthy fat makes for a balanced lunch. But, when it comes to feeding your healthy gut bacteria, diversity is crucial in your diet. 

There are different species of gut bacteria and each have different functions. If you continue to only feed one type of species your gut may become overpopulated with a certain species. Overpopulation of any species can lead to gut dysbiosis. Getting a variety of different types of fiber into the diet increases the growth of healthy bacteria species and increases production of beneficial byproducts. 

Roots like carrots, sweet potatoes, and turnips, are a rich source of nutritious complex carbohydrates. Instead of upsetting blood sugar levels like refined sweet foods do, they help regulate them. They are especially rich in soluble and insoluble fibre, which helps to boost the health of gut bacteria (1)

Why Eat More Root Veggies? 

Long roots – carrots, parsnips, burdock, and daikon radish – are excellent blood purifiers and can help improve circulation in the body. Round roots – turnips, radishes, beets, and rutabagas – nourish the stomach, spleen, pancreas, and reproductive organs. 

Other roots to explore: 

  • Beets contain an abundance of antioxidants and are highly detoxifying. Great to eat while you’re PMS’ing!!!!!!!!!
  • Burdock is considered a powerful blood purifier. This long, thin veggie is a staple in Asian and health food stores. 
  • Celeriac, also known as celery root, is rich in fiber and with a respectable amount of antioxidants. 
  • Jicama is crunchy and refreshing and contains a generous amount of vitamin C. It’s a favorite in its native Mexico and South America. 
  • Onions are rich in antioxidants and other phytonutrients, making them prized for their ability to strengthen the immune system. 
  • Parsnips, which look like giant white carrots, boast a sweet, earthy taste. They’ve also got plenty of fiber, vitamin C, folic acid, niacin, thiamine, magnesium, and potassium. 
  • Radish is an excellent source of vitamin C. It’s also rich in calcium, molybdenum, and folic acid. 
  • Sweet Potatoes contain unsurpassed levels of beta-carotene and are also rich in vitamin C, phytonutrients, and fiber. 

Excited to add more roots to your diet? Here’s a fun, easy recipe: 

Roasted Root Vegetables 

Prep time: 10 minutes 

Cooking time: 25-35 minutes 

  • 1 sweet potato 
  • 2 parsnips 
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 turnips or 1 large rutabaga
  • 1 daikon radish (or substitute/add in other favorites, like squash) 

Extra virgin olive oil salt and pepper herbs: rosemary, thyme or sage (fresh if possible) 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Wash and cut all vegetables into bite-sized cubes. Place in a large baking dish with sides. Drizzle with olive oil; mix well to coat each vegetable lightly with oil. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and herbs. Bake uncovered for 25-35 minutes until vegetables are tender and golden brown, checking every 10 minutes to stir and make sure veggies are not sticking. 

Tip: Any combination of vegetables will work. Roasting only one kind of vegetable also makes a nice side dish. 

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