Today it’s all about the power of purple! That’s right…we are going to give some much needed love to all of the amazing purple vegetables out there! Have you been seeing more of them at your local market? I know I have. Cauliflower, potatoes, spring onions, carrots, cabbage and beets…these are just some of the purple veggies I picked up last weekend at the farmers market. No purple asparagus yet, but hopefully soon!
So, what makes these beauties so amazing? It is a particular type of antioxidant called anthocyanin. This antioxidant not only gives the plants their vibrant color, but it protects the plants from sun and cold. And when we eat these plants, we are absorbing that protection. Anthocyanins protect your cells from free radical damage and also offer protection from diseases such as cancer, heart disease and diabetes. Did you know that some purple veggies actually have more nutrition than the same vegetable in other colors? It’s true….here are just a few examples:
1. Purple potatoes have four times as many antioxidants as white potatoes.
2. Purple carrots have double the amount of alpha and beta carotene.
3. Red cabbage has six to eight times more Vitamin C than green cabbage
4. Purple cauliflower has 15% more antioxidants than kale!
5. Purple sweet potatoes have a lower glycemic index compared to orange sweet potatoes.
In Okinawa, Japan, where they eat a mostly plant based diet, purple sweet potatoes comprise approximately 60% of their total calories. If you are not familiar with Okinawa, it is one of the “blue zones” where they have the highest concentration of people living beyond 100. So, if the key to longevity is as simple as eating more purple sweet potatoes, what better way to do that than with a yummy purple potato salad? This recipe is from Kimberly Snyder who wrote the book, The Beauty Detox Diet. It is a favorite of mine.
Vegan Purple Potato Salad Recipe
Serves 4-6 people
1 pound small purple potatoes
1 small ripe avocado
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons diced red onion
2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/2 cup cucumber, diced
1. Cut the potatoes into 1 inch cubes. Steam them in a steamer for 10 minutes or until tender (but not overly soft).
2. Meanwhile combine avocado, Dijon, red onion, dill, lemon juice and salt in a medium bowl and mash with a fork.
3. Add in the potatoes and cucumbers, and mix again carefully. Adjust seasonings to taste.
I hope you give this recipe a try. I think it just might become a favorite of yours too!
If you are ready to boost your antioxidants, be sure to keep an eye out for some of these purple veggies next time you are shopping. They will be a beautiful and healthy addition to your spring time menus. 😉