OH! Magazine - Australian Version June 2018 - Page 11

( NUTRITION ) WONDERFUL WINTER PRODUCE Nutritionist and celebrity chef Zoe Bingley-Pullin shares her tips for enjoying wonderful winter produce this season. inter offers us beautifully nourishing produce that not only tastes great but is good for your health too. Here’s what we’ll be enjoying this season, and what you should too! W Pears Pears are a great source of dietary fibre, which is beneficial for digestive health, appetite control and weight management. Pears are also a source of vitamin C, vitamin E, copper, potassium and Vitamin B2. Pan-fry or poach pears and serve with yoghurt for a quick winter breakfast or snack. Mandarins Mandarins are well known for their high flavonoid content. Flavonoids function as antioxidants in the body, and therefore offer an array of benefits of health including anti-ageing effects and reducing risk of chronic disease. In addition, mandarins are a good source of vitamin C, which also has antioxidant properties and can help support a healthy immune system during winter. Pineapple Pineapple may seem like a very summery fruit but in fact it’s very beneficial to enjoy during winter. This is due to the vitamin C content of pineapple, which helps support a healthy immune system in addition to the strong antioxidant properties of pineapple. Pineapple also contains bromelain, which is an enzyme that helps to digest proteins. It also has an anti-inflammatory effect in the body. Pineapple is delicious when lightly caramelised and served on top of a warm bowl of oats. Spinach Spinach has one of the highest iron contents of all leafy greens and is also a good source of folate. Folate is beneficial for the cardiovascular system, nervous system and to aid in energy production in the body. Spinach is also a source of lutein, a carotenoid that exerts anti- oxidant benefits in the body especially when it comes to eye health. Lutein is fat- soluble which means it is important to eat spinach alongside a source of fat. Fennel Fennel is well known for its aniseed flavour and is a good source of vitamin C, magnesium, iron, calcium and potassium. Fennel seeds also offer phytoestrogenic properties, which means they may help to modulate the levels of oestrogen in the body. Fennel is lovely roasted and served as a side or used in soups. Sweet potato Sweet potato offers a source of dietary fibre, vitamin C, vitamin B6, manganese and also beta-carotene. Manganese is a mineral, which plays a role in blood sugar regulation and assists wi th the break down of food into energy more efficiently. Sweet potato is a great carbohydrate choice for a sustained release of energy and makes a great addition to soups and stews. Leek Leek offers a source of prebiotics. If you aren’t familiar with the term ‘prebiotics’, they are carbohydrate-containing foods known to resist digestion in the small intestine and, therefore, reach the colon where they are fermented by gut flora. Prebiotics can, in fact, favourably alter the composition of gut bacteria. Leeks can be used to replace onions and shallots in cooking or roasted on their own. Kale Kale is a source of vitamin C, manganese, copper, iron, calcium and carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin. Research has shown eating an array of leafy greens such as kale can help ward off cognitive decline and support brain health. Kale is a great addition to stir-fries, soups and stews. Broccoli Broccoli offers a source of vitamin C, vitamin E, folate, manganese and vitamin K. In addition, kale contains high amounts of glucosinolates, a naturally occurring compound linked to reduced risk of chronic disease. Broccoli is nice served lightly steamed with a drizzle of olive oil or made into a soup. Ginger Ginger is a great herb to include in your diet during winter because it is a very warming herb and is known to stimulate blood flow. Ginger also possesses natural antibacterial properties, another reason it may be beneficial during winter! A lovely way to use fresh ginger is by adding a thick slice to tea. Zoe Bingley-Pullin is a nutritionist, mother, chef and founder of Nutritional Edge, a nutritional consultancy company based in Sydney. To learn more about Zoe visit http://zoebingleypullin.com OH! MAGAZINE ( JUNE 2018 ) 11