Centegra Healthy Living Institute
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Fall foods for a healthy diet

The fall season is a great time of year to experiment with various tasty and nutrient-dense foods. Apples, pumpkins and sweet potatoes may be autumn’s most familiar produce, but pears, pine nuts and pomegranates are equally delicious and healthy.

Apples

One medium apple contains 70 calories, 5 grams of fiber, zero fat and polyphenols to help regulate blood glucose levels. Fuji, Pink Lady, Gala, Jonagold and Cameos are great for snacking, while Granny Smith, Golden Delicious, McIntosh, Cortland, Empire and Braeburn are best for baking. Toss cut up apples in salads, microwave an apple with some cinnamon and raisins, or pair apples with pork, turkey or chicken as a main course meal.

Pumpkins

A trip to the pumpkin patch is a fall tradition for many families, followed by a fun-filled afternoon of carving jack-o-lanterns, but pumpkins are great for more than just fall décor. Pumpkins are a good source of vitamin A, which is needed for eye and bone health. Here are some tips to add pumpkin to your diet.

  • Add pureed pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice and sugar-free vanilla pudding to cooked oatmeal to create a warm and hearty pumpkin pie breakfast.
  • Fruit dip: Mix together pureed pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice and light cream cheese.
  • Sprinkle a dash of pumpkin pie spice in your coffee.

Sweet potatoes

Have you ever wondered what is the difference between a yam and sweet potato? In the United States, you are more likely to find a sweet potato, as true yams are marketed mostly in Latin America. The flesh of yams varies in color from white to purple, while sweet potato flesh is typically orange. When cooked, sweet potatoes are starchy and sweet, as opposed to yams being creamy and earthy. Nutritionally, sweet potatoes are an excellent source vitamin A, as well as a good source of vitamin C, potassium and fiber.

Top Reasons to try a Pomegranate

  1. May aid in cardiovascular health
  2. Contains 30 percent of your daily value for vitamin C
  3. Loaded with antioxidants
  4. Easy to use in baked goods, drinks, salads, side dishes and main courses

 

Julie Holbrook MS, RD, LDN
For other nutrition information or to make an appointment with a registered dietitian, call 877-CENTEGRA (877-236-8347).

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