When I am working with clients who are recovering from chronic stress eating, one of the fundamentals we focus on is pivoting the diet away from sugar and empty calories, and back to wholesome food choices. Part of this means consuming a hearty serving of fresh greens every day as a way to help replenish the nutrients lost from a poor diet.
Leafy green vegetables are packed with powerful phytonutrients, dietary fibre, and trace minerals. Having 2-3 cups per day is recommended. This helps to lower your cholesterol, improve gut and bowel health, and naturally eliminate waste toxins from the colon. Consuming a balanced diet rich in leafy greens can also help to reduce your risk of obesity, heart disease, and high blood pressure. All good reasons to fill your bowl with leaf lettuce, spinach, kale, sprouts and mixed greens more often.
Today, I've rounded up a mouth-watering menu of super healthy recipes from some of my favourite foodie friends that will provide you with the nutrition your body needs and the flavour your taste buds are crying out for. Scroll down to the fourth recipes, it's my absolutely fave! Bon appetit!
I love good Caesar salad but with the high fat content of creamy dressings I usually stick to balsamic drizzle like Sarah of Everything Cook & Eat has used here in her super tasty "cob salad". She's used a blend of nutrient dense, red and green leaf lettuce, and made her own divinely delicious garlic and herb sourdough croutons. Sometimes, switching up a few ingredients can still let you enjoy your old favourites. I promise you won't miss that creamy dressing when you make this plate of goodness. You can grab Sarah's super simple recipe here.
You don't just need to stick to salad bowls to enjoy the body loving health benefits of eating more greens. Try leaf wraps instead like this scrumptious recipe by Brittany Mullins of Eating Bird Food. Collard greens provide an excellent source of vitamin A, B-6, C, and K. The tough leaves are versatile and hold better than leaf lettuce, and also provide trace minerals such as calcium, iron, and magnesium. I love how you can use collard leaves in place of a burrito or flour wrap for people like me who are gluten-intolerant. Definitely a recipe to try this week more than once; just swap out the filling and experiment a little.
I used to call steamy Queensland home, and practically lived on crisp, cool salad most of the year. I'm south nowadays in sunny Sydney but still munch on several of my rabbit food bowls like this summer delight by fellow Nutritionista Lindsay Surowitz of the blog Week Night Brite.
I'm a bit cray cray for watermelon and while you might not think of combining it with balsamic, don't knock it until you try it. The sweetness of the melon is almost dressing on its own. Lindsay uses arugula for the base of this recipe providing your body with an excellent source of folate, vitamins A and C, and over 100% of your daily vitamin K needs. It's also excellent dietary fibre to hug your guts and keep you regular. Try this recipe on its own as a main or side dish. Either way, I bet it quickly becomes your summer favourite too!
Sometimes the simplest meals are the most satisfying. Have you ever noticed that? This simple bowl by fellow foodie Lee Holmes, is made with homegrown goodness and combines a rich variety of greens like arugula, kale, and English spinach leaves with other backyard favourites. As she quotes, it's better than any multivitamin pill, and I'd have to agree. Enjoy eating your vitamins with this recipe, click here.
Yes, love my balsamic dressing as it gives salads a punch of flavour and provides powerful antioxidants help fight cell damage and boost your immune system. In this Rainbow Salad recipe by Kristen Hong of Hello Nutrititarian she shares her thoughts on the different balasmics and gives us her vibrantly coloured rainbow salad bowl recipe. This in one you might even get the kids to try!
Where's all my strawberry lovers at? Come dive into this summery recipe by Brittany Mullins made with the tang of goat cheese, sweetness of summer berries and of course, the green, fibre -rich goodness of mixed greens. She adds a sprinkle of crushed walnuts and a homemade dijon dressing to truly perfect this bowl. Grab strawberries while they are still in-season and delight your tummy with this one!
7. Camembert Mediterranean Buddha Bowl
It's safe to say this buddha bowl (picture top) will leave you feeling deeply satisfied and offers a taste of the Mediterranean with cucumbers, tomato, olives, avocado and basil sprigs. I love making this on a bed of rich, dark green English spinach and then arrange the remaining fresh ingredients on top. You can also use arugula, shredded kale or a blend of all three.
To create, fill a small dessert bowl with leafy greens. Arrange half an avocado on the side, then add cucumber slices, grape tomatoes, and olives (or in my example, fresh cherries because they are in season). Create sections of the bow with each ingredient. Top with half a wheel of camembert cheese and if you choose, a few toasted pieces of pita bread. I'm fully gluten-free so I skip this but if I am making this for friends or my soulmate, I'll add garlic naan or pita bread to the bulk up the bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and a squeeze of lemon juice, balsamic or your favourite Greek dressing.
Avos are a superfood packed with essential dietary fibre and essential nutrients such as potassium, which helps promote healthy digestive function. They are a rich, healthy fat and can help you feel fuller for longer especially if you are someone who is generally not satisfied with just a salad.
I grew up enjoying fresh, sun-ripened backyard blackberries. We'd add them to Mum's famous apple crumble recipe and summer salads like this divinely delicious plate by Lexi & Beth of the foodie blog, Crowded Kitchen. Blackberries are rich in essential vitamins and antioxidants such as phytochemicals, and bioflavonoids. They are a low calorie fruit and good source of dietary fibre. They taste tangy and sweet when fully ripe. Topping a salad plate with a burst of fruity flavour is a fabulous way to make salads more fun to eat. Here, Lexi and Beth have also added blueberries, the crunch of cucumbers, hazelnuts and vegan feta cheese. Yum!
For anyone wishing to naturally curb the appetite, apples are you BFF. They are full of essential nutrients, antioxidants and dietary fibre, which helps you feel fuller sooner and stay satisfied for longer. I love adding them to my salads and often use Pink Lady and Granny Smith varieties for a zip of sweet and tart.
In Lorinda's salad plate recipe, she combines mixed greens with apple, walnuts and dried cranberries for a tasty spin on Waldorf salad. I love the addition of fennel in this recipe as it gives a gorgeous fresh flavouring and is an excellent herb to support good gut health.
Ashley, blogger of Blissful Basil, brings us this crunchy salad plate made with greens, cabbage, cucumbers, shelled edamame, and the crunch of nuts. This is a surprisingly filling salad that feeds like a main meal with a balance of nutrients to keep you satisfied, and your tummy happy. Cabbage is especially high in vitamin C, a potent antioxidant that may protect against heart disease. I love using it raw in my salads for the fibre and because cruciferous vegetables support cancer prevention. Just make sure you wash it well before use. Soybeans, also known as edamame beans, provide an excellent plant-based protein source.
Which one of these will become your new favourite?
Did you boldy make your own version substituting a few healthy food items? I'd love to hear about it. Comment and share below.
You don't have to go it alone anymore. Stress eating is a common problem and luckily you are in the right spot to get the support you totally deserve right now!