Krupa’s Korner – (1/9/2023)

Krupa's Korner

What’s in Season: Leafy Greens

We all know we should eat our greens and they are among the healthiest foods one could eat. So, what makes a vegetable a “powerhouse” vegetable? According to a report published by the Centers for Disease Control, a powerhouse vegetable supplies on average, 10% or more of the daily value of 17 qualifying nutrients per 100 calories. The top-rated green powerhouse vegetables are watercress, chard, beet greens, spinach, and chicory. But, other vegetables are also strong contenders including Chinese cabbage, collard greens, kale, and leaf lettuce.

Leafy greens including kale, spinach, arugula, and chard are undeniable superstars in the world of nutrition. Low in calories, yet high in fiber, vitamins, and phytonutrients, the benefits of leafy greens are incredible for your health in more ways than you would even suspect. They also contain high levels of fiber, iron, magnesium, potassium, and calcium. Furthermore, greens have very little carbohydrates, sodium, and cholesterol. Dark greens supply a significant amount of folate, a B vitamin that promotes heart health and helps prevent certain birth defects. Vitamin K is a fat-soluble vitamin, and it is a key nutrient in many dark green vegetables. It is recommended to eat three cups of dark green veggies per week to help improve your diet.

Additional Benefits:

Supports Optimal Brain Function

A study found that people who ate the leafy greens each day had slower rates of cognitive decline compared to those who ate the least. In fact, the leafy green-eaters had the memory equivalent of someone 11 years younger.


Makes Your Skin Glow

Beta-carotene, a form of vitamin A, is the plant pigment that we normally associate with carrots and other yellow-orange veggies. It is also hiding in leafy greens. Beta-carotene can support a youthful glow in your skin and even works from the inside out as a natural sunscreen, protecting your skin from harmful UV rays. Kale is one of the best sources of beta-carotene.


Improves Inflammatory Response

Supporting a healthy inflammatory response is essential to reduce your risk of developing an autoimmune disease. Leafy greens such as spinach, kale, and collards are high in vitamin D, which promotes the formation of T-cells responsible for accurately differentiating between outside invaders and your body’s cells.

Immune system foods

Relieves Stress

Dark leafy greens are an excellent source of folate, which helps your body produce mood-regulating happy hormones such as dopamine and serotonin. Additionally, the magnesium found in leafy greens can help support cardiovascular health.

woman closing her eyes and relaaxing

Ways to Enjoy Leafy Greens:

Make a salad

Keep salads interesting by varying their colors, textures, and varieties. Perk them up with small tender leafy greens such as romaine lettuce, spinach, and arugula mixed with different kinds of tomatoes, cucumbers, and carrots.

BBQ Chicken Salad

Wrap it up

Make a wrap with tuna, chicken, or turkey, and add romaine lettuce, spinach, arugula, and other veggies for some extra flavor.

chickpea lettuce wraps

Add to soup

Add greens with larger, tougher leaves such as collard greens, kale, or mustard greens into your favorite soup.

Leafy Green Soup


Add chopped spinach, bok choy, or broccoli to chicken or tofu stir-fried with olive or canola oil with some garlic, onion, or ginger.

shrimp, baby corn, bok choy, and assorted vegetables over pasta


Steaming collard greens, mustard greens, kale, or spinach until they are slightly soft.

Steamed Greens

In an omelette

Add steamed broccoli and/or spinach to an egg-white omelette for a vitamin and iron-rich meal.

Veggie Omelette

Want more?

Check out our previous edition of Krupa's Korner!

Now that December is over and life has calmed down slightly, it’s time to focus on YOU and healthy lifestyle choices. The anticipation of a new year, we always want a new fresh start and implement new routines. A lifestyle choice is a personal and conscious decision to perform a behavior that may increase or decrease the risk of injury or disease. Read more about healthy habits below.

Sweet pea risotto


Schedule a nutrition consultation today!

Krupa is our onsite registered dietitian and she is available to help Gatorcare members achieve a healthier lifestyle! It’s not about dieting or counting calories but rather building a healthier relationship with food.

krupa in the kitchen


1. Nutrients and Bioactives in Green Leafy Vegetables and Cognitive Decline: Prospective Study. Martha Clare Morris. Neurology. 2018.

2. Association Between Folate Intake and Melancholic Depressive Symptoms. A Finish Population-Based Survey. Jussi Seppala, et al. Science Direct. 2012.

3. Magnesium Linked to Better Blood Pressure: Meta-Analysis. Stephen Daniells. Nutra Ingredients. 2012.

4. Foods that Fight Inflammation. Harvard Health Publishing. 2020.