This week is National Vegetarian Week in the UK, an annual awareness raising campaign run by the Vegetarian Society to promote the benefits of vegetarianism as well as highlighting various tasty veggie dishes. Events are running throughout the week all over the country in addition to online giveaways and featured recipes which this year are focusing on the vegetarian breakfast.
Though the numbers of committed vegetarians has remained fairly constant over the last 10 years in the UK, the number of people making a real effort to reduce the amount of meat they intake has increased considerably which means that vegetables are now centre stage in our diets more than ever.
Add to this that veggies are the more thrifty option in these economically challenging times and it’s another reason to celebrate this most mighty of food groups!
All Hail the Vegetable!
The health benefits of any vegetable are many and varied with all containing some form of essential vitamins, nutrients or fibre.
These are a few of the real powerhouse vegetables and a few tasty ways to prepare them:
Spinach - A true superfood, spinach in one of the most nutritious vegetables as it’s rich in numerous vitamins and minerals. It’s also high in fibre and doesn’t cause water retention. Best steamed or eaten raw in salads. Popeye was really on to something with this one!
Sweet Potatoes – Simply one of the best vegetables you can eat as they’re loaded with carotenoids, vitamin C, potassium and fibre. Great baked,mashed or roasted. If roasting, then douse in olive oil and herbs before placing in the oven.
Broccoli – Packed with vitamins C, K and folic acid. It’s best steamed or boiled then drizzled with butter or Parmesan or sprinkled with pepper and lemon juice. It also works brilliantly in stir-fries.
Butternut squash – Full of vitamins A and C and tons of fiber, you can steam, stir-fry or liquidise in a soup.
So why not follow the lead of such famous vegetarians as Russell Brand, Joanna Lumley and Paul McCartney and load up on your veggies this week!
What vegetables do you crave?