Fruits, vegetables, aromatic herbs, vegetarian, vegan, daily consumption
Uses and techniques
Fruits, vegetables, herbs
It is worth mentioning that although they are foods that have almost no contribution to our energy sources with few exceptions like the potato, they can be classified as essential food in our daily lives since they regulate the metabolic and life processes in our bodies. They contain 80% to 90% water, vitamins, minerals, fiber, antioxidants and carotenoids.
Aromatic herbs are similar in their composition to vegetables but they have more minerals, particularly calcium, potassium, magnesium and phosphorus apart from essential oils. They are perfect to season any kinds of foods, adding flavour, colour and aroma they give off, activating salivary and gastric secretion.
Cooked or raw, their uses are diverse, how to treat them depends on different factors, personal taste, varieties that better adapt to a certain technique, nutritional potential, etc.
● Raw: before eating them, it is sufficient to clean them in running water or in certain cases using food bleach in a proportion of 1.5 ml per litre of water. When eaten raw, in most cases, they keep better their nutrients, but in other cases they are difficult to digest. Pickled vegetables are worth mentioning here since they are a source of prebiotics. They are just perfect with a touch of olive oil and aromatic herbs.
● Cooked: when cooked, some vegetables produce a higher quantity of antioxidants, they facilitate some nutrients like calcium in addition to extend their preservation.
The best techniques are steamed, griddled or grilled. For this, the best thing to do is finding a balance between eating raw and cooked vegetables.
In most cases, vegetables are usually inexpensive if choosing abundant seasonal and local produce, apart from being tastier. Seasonal vegetables and fruits from the same variety can be different in different places so we have local indicative calendars. However, nowadays we can find quality frozen vegetables and fruits, canned, dehydrated…
In general, they are a source of defenses against infections. Among their advantages:
● Eating vegetables and ecological fruit prevents using chemical products. Moreover, they give you more nutrients and they are tastier.
● Thanks to the quantity of water they contain, they are a source of hydration.
● They help to eliminate toxins.
● The fiber they contain regulate the intestinal transit, preventing constipation.
● They level out cholesterol.
● Being low in fat they help to keep our weight under control.
● Most of them are rich in vitamin A and C, which help to protect our eyesight.
● They supply us with serotonin, which helps to keep a positive mood.
● We find mostly benefits among aromatic herbs which help us to improve our mood or combat stress or insomnia.
● Eating vegetables, herbs and fruits regularly helps to prevent diseases like cancer, cardiac, degenerative diseases and diabetes.
● They are also used in the world of cosmetics and medicine, being beneficial for the skin, oral and body hygiene, among others.
Within them, the edible part can depend on the species, from the root, the stem, the leaves, the flower or the fruit.
In warm climates like the Mediterranean, we can find a broader variety of produce.
Vegetables: Chard, garlic, artichoke, celery, eggplant, pumpkin, onion, cauliflower, chicory, endive, spinach, green bean, lettuce, cucumber, pepper, leek, radish, beet, tomato, carrots.
Fruits: figs, grapes, oranges, melon, watermelon, plums, peaches and even avocados or mango which despite not being locally produced, adapt quite well to this climate.
Aromatic herbs: Many of them are exclusive of these climates, we can find thyme, rosemary, basil, sage, etc.
There are relatively low risks by eating vegetables, herbs and fruits.
● We can find some kinds of problems related to their toxicity, when buying without guarantees, because of the use of pesticides and fertilizers without control.
● Buying ecological produce is more expensive.
● Buying local produce reduces seasonality and variety.