5 Ways to Get Moving This Spring

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Are you moving as much as you should? Being physically active can improve your overall health. At times, we often hear so much about diet, but don’t realize that physical activity is just as important. Most people do not get enough physical activity, and everyone can benefit from being more active. 

According to the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, it is important to get a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week. Easier said than done right? Between work, school, family obligations, it can very difficult to designate time to get those minutes in daily. Physical activity is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle because of its many benefits such as helping to improve blood pressure, weight maintenance, regulating blood sugars and more. It’s time to better your health by moving your body. Here are 5 fun ways to stay active.

1. Invite a friend and get hiking! Hiking is such a powerful cardio workout with so many health benefits, plus it’s fun (especially when you are doing with your loved ones or friends). Hiking can build strength in your glutes, as well as build muscles in your hips and lower legs. Hiking is also a great way to enjoy nature. Research hiking trails in your location, grab somebody, and get ready for a fun and fulfilling workout that you will enjoy!

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2. Let’s Dance! Can’t dance? No worries, dancing for a workout is really all about moving your body, not catching the beat. Dance workouts make exercising more fun and less painful. What’s not to love about sweating away to your very own dance party and jamming? Dancing can be a great heart pounding, cardio workout. Pop in your favorite dance cardio video and get to it!

3. Take a class. Are you getting bored doing the same workouts? Well it’s time to switch it up! The good news is that there are so many fitness classes out there that can help you mix up your workout routine. It’s even more exciting when you are taking it with a friend. A few classes you can try are yoga, kickboxing, ZUMBA, spinning and many many more. Research some fitness classes in your local area and find one that works for you.

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4. Walk! Walking might be one of the easiest workouts you can do, if you are physically capable. It doesn’t require much effort and it goes a very long way. When you go out, aim to park your car further away from where you are going, to get in some extra steps. Call a friend or family member to go for a walk with you or to talk on the phone with you while you walk. You’ll be amazed at how quickly 30 minutes can fly by when you have someone by your side. You might even motivate each other to add more minutes. Spend most of your days at a desk? Aim to take multiple small breaks throughout the day to help you get active. You can set a timer on your phone to get up and go for a walk around the office. On the days you feel that you want something more relaxed, you can try walking.

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5. Use a fitness app. Oh yes... the digital age brings us so many cool gadgets almost everyday. Do you have a smartphone? Most likely you do, but awesome news is that now it can be a great workout companion. There are so many new fitness apps that include step-by-step instructions for different workouts from yoga, to strength training, running and more. If fitness apps are your thing, it can definitely be well worth downloading.

Whichever type of physical activity you choose to do, make sure it is fun and enjoyable! Don’t forget to stretch before and after to avoid tight muscles, drink plenty of water and consume a healthy meal or snack.

The right foods before and after exercise can boost your results. Your body burns carbohydrates for fuel, they give you the energy to power through that jog or fitness class. When you’re done, refueling with a combination of protein and carbs can help you rebuild muscle. For pre and post workout snacks and meals, visit Nature’s Greens!

This post was sponsored by WP Rawl. All thoughts and opinions are from Valerie Agyeman, RDN. For more of her work around wellness and nutrition, visit her website: http://flourishheights.com

Fueling Your Body for Fitness

Being mindful of what you put into your body can help you to meet your fitness goals faster, and it can also help you prepare for and recover from a run, a pickup game of soccer with friends, or a workout at the gym. Exercising is only half the battle of a healthy lifestyle—your diet plays an extremely important part, too. Everyone is different, so with all of this, it’s best to try and understand how your body specifically responds to different practices.

You can get 30 minutes of physical activity every day, as recommended by the Mayo Clinic, but if you’re not fueling your body with the right nutrition, you’re won’t reap all of the available benefits of a healthy lifestyle. Adding in extra time at the gym in the mornings before work or going on long walks with your family at the end of the day are great things to do, but at the end of the day, you’ve got to be eating right in addition to the physical activity.

The Revival Smoothie. 😍

The Revival Smoothie. 😍

Before you hit the gym, make a smoothie at home that’s filled with fruit and greens. The Revival smoothie created by Tasty As Fit is a perfect one to add to your workout routine. Enjoy a smoothie like this one, or any other one filled with fruits and greens, about an hour before you plan to workout. Your body will have time to digest the smoothie before you start getting your heart rate up at the gym.

Did you know that kale is a wonderful green to eat after you complete a workout? Kale can help manage inflammation after your finish exercising for the day, per the US News and World Report. Inflammation can cause stiffness, soreness, and your body’s ability to bounce back after a strenuous workout. So go ahead—toss some kale into a post-workout smoothie or add a dark leafy greens salad filled with kale to go along with your dinner for the evening.

How are you fueling your body for your workouts and your fitness goals? We’d love for you to share with us! Post a picture or video on social media, and be sure to tag @naturesgreens and #FarmFreshGreens!

What to Eat Before and After a Workout and Why

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Sure, we know that food and exercise go hand in hand, but sometimes with all of the information out there knowing what to eat before and after a workout becomes harder than the workout itself!

Everyone’s needs are a little different depending on their goals, and type of exercise, but there are a couple of nutrition guidelines when it comes to what to eat before and after a workout that will ensure you a fueled up to perform your best and replenish your muscles properly after a sweat sesh. It’s very important to take into consideration how you feel depending on what you eat before and after a workout and how it makes you feel during it. It may require some trial and error to get it right but once you know what makes you feel your best you’ll be ready to take on any workout out there!

Even as a dietitian sometimes I don’t fuel up properly or wait too long to eat after a workout and find myself not feeling so great. It happens! There will always be circumstances that prevent us from perfect execution but the bottom line is if you can roughly follow these guidelines and prepare in advance it will not only allow you to get stronger in your workouts, hep your body recover properly and take the guesswork out of what to eat before and after hitting the gym.

Pre Workout Nutrition

Carbs are key. Prior to a workout we want to make sure our bodies have enough energy, and that energy comes from carbs. Carbs are broken down in our bodies into glucose and then stored in the muscles as glycogen. We need enough carbs to replenish that glycogen store when we’re using it up during exercise. You’ll want what you have before a workout to be mostly carbs with a litte bit of protein too.

You’ll often see runners eating a plain white bagel when gearing up for a run because it’s a simple carbohydrate, which is easier to digest than let’s say a multigrain bagel with seeds (more fiber = slower to digest). Another fun fact here is that carbohydrate loading actually does not just happen the night before a race, you’re body can store carbohydrate 1-7 days in advance. Something to keep in mind if you’re a runner!

Protein is also important for muscle protein synthesis and recovery. A small amount of protein paired with the carbohydrates before a workout provides amino acids to help reduce inflammation as well as build muscle tissue.

When it comes to fat, even healthy sources of fat like avocado, nuts, and nut butter can be hard on the stomach to digest. Some people can tolerate nuts well before hitting the gym, but my recommendation is to keep consumption of this macronutrient at a minimum before the gym.

Pre-workout snack / meals ideas:

Aim for timing of consumption to be 2-3 hours before your workout. If what you’re having is more of a meal than a snack air on the side of 3 hours and if it’s getting close to workout time go for something like a banana or a granola bar.  

  • 1 slice of toast with hummus, kale and 1 slice of turkey on top

  • ½ cup carrots + ½ cup sliced peppers with 2 tbsp. hummus and 1 hard-boiled egg

  • Banana or apple slices with 1 tbsp. nut butter

  • Greek yogurt with low sugar granola + ¼ cup fruit

  • Granola bar (look for ones that have 10 grams of sugar or less if possible. Depending on the size and what’s in the bar it might be smart to have half and save half for after the workout)

  • ½ cup oatmeal with banana slices + 1 tbsp. hemp seeds

  • ½ of a wrap with turkey, spinach, tomatoes and hummus

Post Workout Nutrition

Eating after a workout is super important--your muscles are literally hungry for energy so refueling properly is crucial for replenishment, preventing muscle injury and oh yeah to keep from being hangry!

The optimal carbohydrate-to-protein ratio for this post workout nutrition is 3:1 (3 grams of carbohydrate for every 1 gram of protein). Research shows this carbohydrate-protein combination consumed within 30 minutes of exercise nearly doubles the insulin response, which results in more stored glycogen aka your body is ready and needing that energy vs. storing it as fat. This stored glycogen is then ready to fuel your next workout!

I rely on a few fool-proof snack and meals ideas that I try to always have in my fridge or in my bag so that I can refuel soon after a tough workout. Timing is also an important part of the refueling equation. Some might not be as sensitive to waiting longer to eat after a workout, but I know for me it’s key to eat within 30 minutes to an hour after a workout.

Post-workout snack / meal ideas:

Aim for timing of consumption to be within 30 minutes to an hour after a workout for the reasons stated above!  

Kale Cauliflower Power Breakfast Bowl

Kale Cauliflower Power Breakfast Bowl

  • Kale cauliflower power breakfast bowl

  • Protein smoothie: 1 cup almond milk + 1 cup kale, ½ cup blueberries, 1 tsp. freshly grated ginger, blended plus your protein powder of choice

  • Banana with 2 tbsp. nut butter and a hard-boiled egg (bananas are great before or after because of their carb content--they fuel or refuel your muscles fast!)

  • Baked salmon or chicken with brown rice or quinoa and roasted veggies

  • Kale sausage and egg muffins with toast

Hello Hydration

Staying hydrated before and after a workout is also equally as important as what you eat! Dehydration can cause muscle cramping, and overall fatigue going into a workout.

Here again, there’s no one-size-fits-all method to determining fluid needs during exercise, a good place to start is drinking about 2 cups of water 2 to 3 hours before exercise and 1 cup of water 10 to 20 minutes before working out. Being cognizant that you are working out that day and staying on top of your water intake (aka refilling a reusable water bottle a few times) will help ensure you are feeling good all throughout the activity.

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In the hours after exercise, people should aim for approximately 16 to 24 ounces of fluid for every pound (0.5 kg) of body weight lost during exercise to replenish fluids. After more intense workouts consider opting for coconut water to help replenish electrolytes like potassium and magnesium lost through sweat. These minerals are also super important for proper muscle contraction and relaxation, so if you like the taste this is a smart hydration option!


This post was sponsored by WP Rawl. All opinions are from Maggie Michalczyk, RDN.

Two of My Favorite Ways to Enjoy Fresh Greens Without Sacrificing Time

Nicole Yon, RD on her family’s cattle farm.

Nicole Yon, RD on her family’s cattle farm.

If I had to pick just a few words to describe my eating style it would be “nutritious convenience.” As a registered dietitian I am well versed in what it takes to build a satisfying and healthy plate, but given our hectic schedules on the farm - I also don’t have much time to spare for elaborate and nutritious meals. Since I’m not willing to sacrifice nutrition in the interest of time, I depend a lot on simple meals and healthy conveniences such as Nature’s Greens pre-washed Greens. 

Growing up Saturday night always meant pizza night in our house. As a child my favorite flavor was Hawaiian Pizza (ham and pineapple only!) and I enjoyed helping my dad make the dough from scratch, spread the sauce, shred the cheese and dress my own pizza before peering through the oven glass watch it cook.  

These days pizza nights looks a little different in our house, but my husband and I carry on the tradition by eating pizza almost every weekend. While I still enjoy a Hawaiian pizza every now and then, we use a few more convenience items like pre-made crusts and triple washed Nature’s Greens Kale. By making pizza at home (as opposed to grabbing take out or a frozen pizza) we can control a few more of the ingredients and a healthy version of one of our favorite foods!

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Easy Everyday Pizza

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 10 minutes

Ingredients

• 1 Personal Size Pizza Crust (Udi’s Gluten free shown)

• 3-4 tablespoons Pesto

• 1 roma tomato, thinly sliced

• 1/8 of a red onion, chopped

• 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded

• 3 to 4 ounces cooked protein of choice (shredded chicken, chicken sausage, tofu)

• 3 cups Nature’s Greens Kale Greens

• 1-2 tablespoons olive oil or pecan oil

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 375°

2. Prep veggies by slicing roma tomato, chopping red onion and massaging kale greens with oil.

3. Spread pesto sauce on pizza crust. Follow with a layer of roma tomatos, red onion, shredded mozzarella cheese, and protein of choice.

4. Top with kale greens - (if it looks like these are taking over your pizza, don’t worry, they will cook down in the oven!)

5. Bake pizza in preheated oven on a cookie sheet for 8-10 minutes.

If you’re anything like me, you might love the combination of chocolate and peanut butter and you probably hate to buy an ingredient that can be only used in one dish. After making kale pizza, I like to use my leftover kale greens in smoothies through out the week! Having pre-washed Nature’s Green’s kale makes it even easier to throw together a quick and nutritious smoothie in the mornings and my favorite ones also happens to taste like chocolate and peanut butter! 

I can often feel intimidated by recipes I see on Instagram or Pinterest that require uncommon ingredients or special powders. The truth is, you can make a nutritious smoothie with a few basic ingredients and I love making “good for you” and filling smoothies by this simple formula: 3 cups green, 2 cups of liquids, 1 cup of fruit and a few tablespoons of “extras.” Extras could include peanut butter, cocoa powder, maple syrup, ginger, turmeric, cinnamon, or honey! I find this smoothie to be a great option for busy mornings and might pair it with a few hard boiled eggs for a quick, on-the-go, protein packed breakfast!

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Back to Basics Smoothie

Prep time: 5 minutes

Ingredients

• 1 cup frozen banana slices

• 1 tablespoons peanut butter

• 3 cups kale greens

• 1 cup milk of choice

• 1 cups non-fat plain greek yogurt

• 1-2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder

Directions

1. Combine banana, peanut butter, yogurt, milk and cocoa powder in blender until smooth.

2. Add kale greens and blend until smooth.

For MORE of Nicole’s content, follow her on Instagram! @fromfarmtolabel

This blog post was sponsored by WP Rawl and written by Nicole Yon. All thoughts and opinions are hers.

Love Your Greens!

Collard greens entering our processing lines in Pelion, SC.

Collard greens entering our processing lines in Pelion, SC.

We don’t know about you, but here at WP Rawl, we love our greens! Give us all of the dark, leafy greens—they’re what we produce the most of in our fields. What dark leafy greens do we grow specifically?

If you could see our fields during peak seasons, you would see a lot of kale. Did you know? Kale has a lot of vitamins and minerals packed into their dark green leaves. 1 cup of raw kale contains more than the daily recommended value of vitamin K, vitamin C, and vitamin A! It also contains iron, folate, omega-3s, magnesium, calcium, iron, fiber, and protein. Talk about a green that’s packed with nutrients!

While you probably have heard of or eaten Kale, chances are you might not know much about Mustard greens. Mustard greens are one of the most overlooked vegetables in the produce section, but here at WP Rawl, we love them! Like kale, they’re packed with nutrients, but most notably is that they have a high amount of vitamin K. Vitamin K has strong anti-inflammatory properties which helps to improve your cardiovascular health. For this reason, mustard greens are a very heart healthy food to include in your diet!

A leafy green that is very similar to Mustard in looks and popularity is Turnip greens. While the white root of the turnip plant tends to be the most popular part of a turnip plant to eat, the green leaves actually are the most nutritious part to add to your diet. Turnip greens are an incredible source of vitamins K, A, C, E, and B6 as well as folate, manganese, and calcium. The antioxidants found within these greens also help fight against heart disease, cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and more.

Last, but certainly not least, are Collard greens. Like with kale greens, mustard greens, and turnip greens, collard greens are also a wonderful source of nutrients that your body needs to be at it’s healthiest. However, Collard greens stand out on their own as the best green to eat to help lower your cholesterol. Best known in the South for their role at holiday dinners, Collard greens are beginning to take shape as a year round staple in diets in several regions of the country.

There are so many great reasons to love your greens! They do incredible things for our bodies and help keep us healthy and happy. How do you love your greens? Share with us on social media by tagging @naturesgreens and #FarmFreshGreens!

Diets: Ain’t Nobody Got Time for That!

We hope that everyone had a wonderful holiday season and that it’s been a good new year for you so far. The beginning of the year is always full of new beginnings, fresh starts, and plenty of goals and resolutions. Did you set any New Year’s Resolutions for the upcoming year? Our team set quite a few for ourselves: from growing more greens for you to enjoy and bringing you more tasty recipes to try out in your kitchens, we’re on a mission in 2019.

What types of resolutions did you set? If you set a goal to lose weight and become healthier by finally trying out that diet your friend keeps recommending, we have a different goal for you to consider.

Let’s face it. Most people don’t stick with their diets for a number of reasons. They can be too difficult to follow, they can limit the types of foods that you enjoy eating, and they can cause you to cook multiple meals for dinner if not everyone in your house is following the same diet. Diets can be pretty inconvenient, and nobody has time for that! Plus, we think there are better ways for you to become healthier and potentially lose weight along the way—if that is indeed something you want.

Think about shifting your goal away from weight loss through dieting, and instead focus on becoming healthier by adopting positive lifestyle habits.

Here are a few habits that you can easily incorporate into your everyday life:

  1. Focus on eating a balanced diet—filled with plenty of greens, vegetables, fruits, whole grains, protein, and more—that will leave you feeling more energized, healthier, and fulfilled.

  2. Drink plenty of water. Not only will you stay hydrated, but you’ll potentially reduce your appetite and food intake throughout the day. Start your morning with a glass and keep it going throughout the day! Tip: you should drink half of your body weight in ounces each day.

  3. Listen to your body and don’t live in guilt. Should you eat fast food everyday? Probably not. Is it okay for you to have a cheeseburger with fries every now and then because that is what you genuinely want? Absolutely. The key is to take a moment before you eat something to ask yourself if that is really what you’d like to have? If your body is telling you that it is time for leafy greens—listen! If it is telling you that it needs some chocolate, guess what? Listen! Your body is always wanting to return to balance.

  4. Add exercise into your day. Even a thirty minute walk around your neighborhood with your kids at the end of the day or a quick yoga session during your lunch hour is really beneficial.

Diets come and go, but we believe that healthy lifestyle habits can become second nature to you. Which habit do you plan on adding to your day to day life first? Share with us on social media by tagging @naturesgreens and #FarmFreshGreens!

Farm Fresh Greens

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#yourleafygreensguide

Leafy greens. You’ve heard that you should probably include them in your meals routinely, but why? What nutritional advantages do leafy greens possess and how can you best consume leafy greens?

We’re glad you asked!

This year we will explore each of the four major leafy greens we grow, one per quarter:

  • Kale greens (January-March)

  • Mustard greens (April-June)

  • Turnip greens (July-September)

  • Collard greens (October-December)

We are partnering with a Registered Dietitian each quarter of the year, and each RD will look specifically at the leafy green we are highlighting during their respective quarter. They will share exciting nutritional information about the leafy green they are researching, wellness tips, original recipes, and more!

Visit our website for more information! https://farmfreshgreens.rawl.net

#farmfreshgreens

When you buy our leafy greens, you are buying the culmination of our entire team’s work to deliver an outstanding experience for you. As your leafy greens guide, we are dedicated to getting fresh leafy greens to you with high quality, and we want to show you behind the scenes from around our entire operation so you can see exactly where your fresh produce is coming from and how it’s grown and packed.

What can you expect to see from us in 2019?

Here’s what you need to be on the lookout for throughout the year so you don’t miss out!

  • Blogs on leafy greens nutrition, recipes, and wellness

  • Instagram giveaways featuring WP Rawl swag + other special treats handpicked by our food blogger friends

  • New recipes featuring Nature’s Greens® from food bloggers every week

  • Behind the scenes videos posted on Youtube

Follow/Subscribe!

Are you following us on Instagram (@naturesgreens) and Facebook (@WPRawl)? All of the content we share on these platforms is to help you discover new ways to enjoy leafy greens and to connect you with our farming operations.

If you are not subscribed already, now is a great time to get email updates from us whenever we release new recipes, blogs, and important news! SUBSCRIBE HERE

Keeping Fresh Leafy Greens Part of Your Holidays!

During the holiday season, there is one type of leafy green in particular that is sought after by many: Collard greens. Due to a tough growing season this year in the US, we are faced with a shortage of Collard greens.

Don’t panic, friends. As your Leafy Greens Guide, we are here to tell you there are other leafy greens such as:

These three leafy greens are just as tasty and can easily be swapped out in your favorite holiday recipe. Need some recipe inspiration? We are here for you! Below are some delicious recipes from our cookbook for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacking and dessert.

Holiday Breakfast Ideas:

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Savory Stuffed Mushrooms

Holiday Lunch + Dinner Ideas:

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Kale Chia Chocolate Truffles

We hope you enjoy trying new recipes and flavors this holiday season!

Connect with us on Instagram or Facebook and tell us your thoughts on any recipes you try.

Happy Holidays!








10 Ways to Indulge This Holiday Without Overdoing It

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This season is a time to celebrate. But, you can enjoy the holidays in a healthy balance. Here are 10 tips for indulging without overdoing it, and finding time for some wellness-driven self care. 

1. Start each day with a nutrient rich breakfast.

This important meal can set you up for all day energy, and leave you less prone to oversnacking in the evening. It can be as quick and simple as a piece of fresh fruit paired with a few hard boiled eggs and cut veggies dipped in guacamole. Or, check out the breakfast recipes on our site for options like make-ahead frittata, savory egg muffins, and overnight oats. 

2. Drink plenty of H2O.

It can be easy to forget to drink during this busy time of year. But staying well hydrated helps to regulate appetite and support overall energy and good digestive health. Keep a water bottle with you to sip throughout the day. 

3. Rate your splurge options.

There are numerous opportunities to indulge throughout the season, but some are more special than others. Before reaching for a treat, rank it on a 0-5 scale with 5 being can’t-live-without and 0 being meh. If something doesn’t rate at least a 4, chances are you won’t regret forgoing it or feel deprived.

4. Fit in veggies.

In addition to being chock full of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber, and low in calories, eating more veggies is tied to better mental wellness. That’s key during what can be a stressful season. Stock veggies with hummus for snacking, and rely on easy breezy choices at mealtimes, like: ready to eat greens dressed with balsamic vinaigrette topped with quick protein, like canned beans or salmon; fresh or frozen veggies quickly sautéed in low sodium veggie broth with minced garlic and Italian herb seasoning; fresh or frozen veggies steamed and tossed with jarred pesto. 

5. Find a little ‘you time’ each day, even if it’s just five minutes.

Go for a brisk walk, listen to a guided meditation, stretch, turn on some music, or dance! Taking a break to briefly focus on yourself can reinvigorate your spirit, and help you make intuitively healthier choices throughout the day.    

6. Imbibe strategically.

Pair every cocktail with a full glass of water. This will keep you better hydrated and slow your drinking pace. It may also help curb your calorie intake, and avert the alcohol-induced munchies.     

7. Bring some nutritious dishes to holiday parties

A veggie tray with healthy dips is always a good bet, or try our recipe for light but flavorful veggie stuffed mushroom caps. Filling up your plate with options like these can help balance out traditional, more indulgent fare.   

8. Stash better-for-you snacks in your bag for shopping excursions.

Opt for nuts, or a clean ingredient protein bar. Apart from keeping you fueled, a healthy snack can help prevent becoming overly hungry, which can lead to rebound overeating, and allow you to avoid less healthy fast food options.          

9. Slow your eating pace, especially at big holiday meals.

Try to put your utensil down between bites, take breaths, and remain mindful of both your food and your fullness level.

10. Practice gratitude.

Research shows that spending 15 minutes before bed writing down grateful sentiments improves sleep length and quality, another key wellness component this time of year. If you don’t have the chance to jot down your thoughts, simply run through them in your mind. Any time spent focused on gratitude is valuable now, and all year long. 

How do you stay balanced during the holidays? Please share your thoughts, tips, and favorite healthy recipes.  

Eat More Plants: How You Can Transition Your Lifestyle to Include More Plant Based Meals

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Shutterstock #726737797

Are you beginning to focus more on the types of food and the quality of food that you’re preparing in your home for you and your family to eat? Many people consider eliminating certain types of food from their diets or look into vegetarian and vegan lifestyles without realizing that there’s another option out there to pursue.

What is a plant based lifestyle?

A plant based diet, which is more of a lifestyle than a “diet,” could be a great option for you and your family to consider. It offers plenty of flexibility while still striving to incorporate healthy, minimally processed foods into your diet. According to Healthline.com, to eat plant based means that you are:

  • Emphasizing whole foods and decreasing the number of processed foods

  • Limiting or avoiding animal productsFocusing on plants including vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, seeds, and nuts

  • Excluding refined foods such as added sugars, white flour, and processed oils

Not only are you improving your health and helping to reduce the risk or symptoms of several chronic diseases with a plant based diet, but you have the opportunity to choose exactly where the food you choose to consume comes from. At WP Rawl, we believe in supporting local farmers and doing so by partnering with them to help grow fresh veggies, as well as buying their products for our own families to enjoy. 

With weekly meal planning and meal prepping, transitioning to a plant based lifestyle is an easy transition to make. In the recipe section of our website, you can find an abundance of delicious recipes that you can easily work into you and your family’s day. Two such recipes that are great for this time of year? Our Pumpkin Spice Overnight Oats and our Super Greens Soup.


Pumpkin Spice Overnight Oats

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Our Pumpkin Spice Overnight Oats (link to recipe once it is live on website) are a delicious addition to your morning breakfast routine this time of year. You can skip the Pumpkin Spice Latte and fulfill your pumpkin-craving with a more natural, plant-based choice in the morning. These overnight oats include rolled oats, pure maple syrup, ginger, cinnamon, canned pumpkin, chopped kale, and roasted pumpkin seeds to create a delicious, quick breakfast for you. 

The best part? You can make these oats ahead of time so that they’re easy to grab and go in the morning.


Super Greens Soup

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If you want to be sure that you’re sticking to your plant based diet, skip the canned soup aisle at the grocery store and pick up ingredients instead to make your own savory soup. Our Super Greens Soup (link to recipe once it is live on website) is delicious, full of great nutrition, and comes together easily on a weeknight in less than 30 minutes.

We want to see how you’re incorporating a plant based diet into your life! Take a picture of you shopping for your plant based ingredients or of your meal, and share it on social media using the hashtags #backtofresh and #naturesgreens. We’d love to see what kinds of recipes that you’re cooking up in your kitchen!

Follow us on Instagram for more recipes and behind the scenes on the farm!

Eat This Not That - No Preservatives

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Shutterstock #750161494

When you’re walking down the aisles of the grocery store with your grocery shopping list in hand, do you stop to think about what you’re adding into your cart before you toss it in? Do you take the time to read the ingredients on the prepackaged food products that you’re planning to purchase? The next time that you’re in the store—take a minute to read through the ingredients printed on the outside of the package. You may find that there are more things found in your food than you previously thought!

You can find additives like MSG, high-fructose corn syrup, and trans fat as well as a number of preservatives.

What are preservatives?

According to www.chemicalsafetyfacts.org, the term “preservatives” refers to the functional name for a wide variety of compounds that help slow or prevent bacterial growth in a wide range of products, including foods. They help prevent your food from spoiling on the shelf in the grocery store and they also help prevent your food from becoming contaminated. Preservatives can be both natural or man-made, synthetic chemicals. Now more than ever, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) closely regulates the use of preservatives in foods and is continuously researching them to ensure they are safe for our consumption.

Why should you eat foods that have no preservatives in them?

While approved by the FDA, preservatives have been linked to asthma-related sensitivities and to allergic reactions in some cases according to Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. Some preservatives, even those labeled as General Recognized as Safe by the FDA, have the potential to become carcinogens, which can cause cancer, when digested.

How can you incorporate preservative-free foods in to your daily lifestyle and into your weekly meal plan?

The easiest and best way to ensure that you’re eating food with no preservatives in it is to prepare and cook your meals at home using fresh or organic ingredients. For any food that you eat that comes pre-packaged, make sure that you read the ingredients list to see what is included the food. Do you see things like sodium nitrate, sulfites, or sodium benzoate? These are three preservatives commonly found in pre-packed foods in the grocery store. At WP Rawl, we believe in eating as many meals preservative free as possible. On our website, you can find an abundance of recipes that use fresh ingredients and ingredients that are free from additives and preservatives. This month, we’re highlighting two of our newest recipes for you:

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Kale and Lentil Hummus

What You Do:

1. In a blender or food processor, puree half cup of lentils with olive oil, garlic, lemon juice, Italian seasoning, black pepper, and balsamic vinegar until smooth.

2. Gently fold in whole lentils, kale, and freshly chopped basil leaves into lentil mixture.

3. Refrigerate and serve with celery and baby carrots.

Skip picking up a container of hummus in the grocery store and instead, pick up the ingredients to make your own hummus at home. You’ll end up with the freshest hummus possible and also one that’s free of preservatives that are included to extend the shelf life of the hummus at the store.

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Vegan Kale Nicoise Salad

What you do:

1. In a small bowl whisk together olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, Dijon, garlic, pepper, salt, and half of dried parsley. Set aside.

2. Place kale in salad bowl. Top with sliced potatoes, green beans, chickpeas, and olives.

3. Garnish with remaining parsley, and lemon.

4. Serve dressing on the side.

This salad recipe not only includes instructions for putting together the salad, but it includes instructions for making your own salad dressing. By making the salad dressing yourself, you’re ensuring that you’re not adding anything to your healthy meal that includes a preservative.


We want to see how you’re eating preservative-free! Take a picture of you preparing your meal or of the final product and share it on social media, using the hashtags #backtofresh and #naturesgreens. We’d love to see what kinds of recipes that you’re cooking up in your kitchen!

What Does "Clean Eating" Mean?

Shutterstock #631739033

Shutterstock #631739033

The first time I heard the word ‘clean’ in relation to food was back in the mid 1990’s. Supermarkets noticed that customers were beginning to look beyond info like calories, and towards ingredient lists. Health conscious shoppers were starting to pay attention to how foods were made, and exactly what they were made from. As a result, health food stores—which stocked fresh foods and simple ingredient products—were attracting more and more consumers, and traditional grocers took note.

Fast forward to today, and clean eating has gone mainstream, fostered by people from all walks of life, who want to feel good about what they’re putting in their bodies. This includes moms, who want the healthiest, most nourishing food for their children; millennials, who value natural living; and older adults who are motivated to maintain wellness and support longevity.  

The basic principle of clean eating is to let ingredients guide you. While it’s not realistic to never eat anything that comes out of a jar, box, or bag, it’s important to choose packaged foods with all natural, recognizable ingredients. For example, chickpeas from a can would be considered ‘clean’ if the only ingredients are chickpeas, water, and sea salt. The same is true for bagged greens with the only ingredient being kale, or frozen blueberries with no additional ingredients.

The idea is to slash your exposure to artificial additives and chemicals used in highly processed foods, as fillers, preservatives, flavor enhancers, colors, and the like. Recent research has shown that exposure to these man-made ingredients can harm health, from taxing immunity, to fueling inflammation, and possibly even contributing to obesity.     

But clean eating is also about how the foods we buy impact the health of the planet, and our ability to support an eco-friendly and sustainable food supply.  All of these vital issues are why clean eating is not a trend, but rather an important consumer movement.  

In addition to seeking out foods with ingredients you easily recognize, clean eating involves putting them together to make nutrient-packed meals and snacks. Some simple swaps to trade processed fare for fresh, clean food include: eating oats or a smoothie made with fruits and veggies for breakfast instead of a muffin or danish; snacking on nuts and fruit or veggies and hummus rather than chips; or whipping up a veggie-packed stir fry instead of microwaving a frozen entrée.

There are dozens of tasty recipes on www.rawl.net to guide you, and you’ll notice that many use simple, all natural ingredients—like extra virgin olive oil instead of margarine, and whole quinoa or beans in place of refined starches. That’s a big part of our Back to Fresh philosophy.

Tell us about the clean eating changes you’ve made and your favorite whole food-based recipes and meals in the comments or on social media @naturesgreens!

What to Expect When You Drive with WP Rawl

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How much do you pay per mile?

Starting pay is $0.46/mile with sign on bonus.

Where do you run?

We deliver to most major metro areas in the eastern half of the United States.

Do you have home time? How long will I be on the road?

On average, you can expect to be on the road an average of 3-5 days. Home every weekend or every other weekend.

What kind of trucks do you have?

Freightliners—fully equipped. Standard and Automatic available, years 2010-2018.

What benefits do you have?

We offer medical, dental, vision, and life. You will also be eligible for the 401k program where we offer a company match up to 4%.

Are your deliveries live unloads, or are they drop-and-hook?

Due to the nature of our product ( produce ) our outbound loads are live unloads.  Delivery dwell times can at times be frustrating, but we ask that you contact us when delayed so we can work with customer service to get you moving.  Inbound loads coming back to Pelion are not live unloads, and you are simply asked to top off the reefer fuel tank and then drop trailer on the yard.  Many of our backhauls delivering to consignees other than WP Rawl are live unloads.  We are consistently working on establishing a greater number of backhauls that are drop and hook.

Do you offer dedicated lanes?

Yes, we do.  Roughly 65% of our outbound loads shipped are based on consistent lanes.  We must always adapt to the needs of the business, but remain committed as possible to the dedicated lane structure.  Running a consistent lane allows a driver to establish a relationship with the customer.  That relationship then creates an environment which tends to lessen the time spent at the DC during the delivery.

Fill Your Child’s Lunchbox this Fall with Healthy, Nutritious Meals

Children across the country have traded in their bathing suits and beach towels for book bags and notebooks—the summer is over and a new school year has begun. With it comes new classes, new teachers, new lessons to be learned, and new lunchboxes to be filled with nutritious meals and snacks for your child to enjoy throughout the school day.

Making sure that your child is well-fed during the school day is extremely important to their academic success. If they’re eating regular, healthy meals then they are more likely to be well-rested, more attentive, and will likely retain more information from their classes each day. Packing a good lunch, or helping your child pack his or her own, is one of the very best ways that you can help them be successful in school.

Instead of relying on your child to make health-conscious decisions in the lunch line in the cafeteria each day at school, send a healthy, delicious, and nutritious meal with them in their lunchbox to refuel with in the middle of the day. We’ve pulled together two different lunch ideas that we know your kids will love. Plus, you’ll love knowing that they’re getting the proper nutrition that they need to make it through the school day! 

Four Food Groups Kid’s Lunch

For a lunch that packs in as many different food groups as possible, check out our Four Food Groups Kid’s Lunch. Your child will devour this appetizing lunch that includes an avocado, kale, hard boiled eggs, red bell pepper, and a seedless tangerine. It’s a good variety of food that’s easy to eat in the lunchroom and is filling enough to keep your child from being hungry in the afternoon.

Superfood Collard Roll-Ups

Our Superfood Collard Roll-Ups are easy to make, easy to pack in a lunch, and easy for your child to grab and eat for lunch! They’re full of all kinds of superfoods to keep your child’s mind focused throughout the school day and they’re delicious enough that we know they’ll eat them up!

What are you preparing for your children for lunch this school year to help them stay well-fed throughout the school day? We’d love to see a peek inside of your child’s lunchbox! Take a photo and share it on social media with us by tagging us (@naturesgreens) and by using the hashtag #backtofresh.

Family Meal Ideas for All Times of Day

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Shutterstock #1120735544

Throughout your pregnancy, we know that you did an outstanding job of eating the freshest, most nutritious foods to supply your growing baby with the best nutrition possible. But providing your child the best nutrition possible doesn’t stop once they’re born! As soon as they’re able to eat table food, it’s time to focus back in on what should be included in their diet to help them grow healthy and strong. 

Getting your child to eat what’s best for them—instead of the snack foods they see their friends eating—can be a challenge. We know that kids can be stubborn and incredibly selective with the foods that they choose to eat. However, we know a few tricks to adding in nutrient-rich vegetables and greens into your child’s meals without them noticing.

Our number one tip? Add in an extra veggie or two into a meal that they already love. They may not notice the addition, or they may absolutely love the new flavor. Either way, they’re getting the nutrition that their growing body needs! Here are our recipe suggestions that we know even the pickiest eater will enjoy:

Breakfast

With our Kale & Sausage Egg Muffins, you can help your kids start their day off right with a nutritious breakfast! This combination of eggs, all-natural chicken sausage, kale, and bell peppers is a tasty blend that we know your kids will gobble up in the mornings.

Lunch

Does your child love fruit? These Turkey Avocado Roll-Ups will satisfy their fruit craving with the inclusion of strawberries, but will also pack a nutritious punch with the addition of our Nature’s Greens collards and avocado. They’re easy for little hands to pick up to eat, and they’re easy to throw in a lunch box for your older kids to enjoy during the school day.

Snack

When you’re settling down for a quiet afternoon with your child’s favorite movie, our Sweet Greens and Seeds Popcorn snack is a healthy way to tide their hunger over until dinner time. It’s a crunchy, filling snack that won’t have your children asking for extra butter on top!

Dinner

Put a spin on your weekly Taco Tuesday, and introduce your family to these delicious Vegetarian Tacos.They can enjoy a healthier version of their favorite Mexican dish—the collards, avocado, cilantro, tomatoes, black beans, and corn make a great substitute for ground beef.

How to Help Your Kids Eat Nutritious Foods

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Nutrition is one of the three key factors that influence early childhood development, along with genetics and environment. Research shows that healthy eating habits during a child’s early years are connected to more optimal growth, as well as mental and physical health later in life, including academic performance, and a reduced risk of adult onset diseases.

One of the best ways to foster healthy eating habits early on is to involve your child with shopping for and preparing foods in age-appropriate ways. Even observing you joyfully cooking can boost a child’s interest in trying new, healthy foods.

Allow your little one to smell or touch ingredients, rinse produce, tear greens, sprinkle on herbs, stir, mash, and pour. Talk to your kids about what you’re doing in the kitchen, and share facts about how various foods were grown, why you like them, and how they help our health. Plant a garden, or even a few window pots, and involve kids in the process of growing, harvesting, and eating plant-based foods. 

Because toddlers and small children love finger foods, find healthful ways to incorporate produce. Cut casseroles into bit sized squares, like our Sweet Potato and Kale Casserole. And add vegetables to foods kids can eat with their hands, like our Savory Veg Power Pancakes. Stir pureed or finely chopped vegetables into other kid-friendly fare, like oatmeal, dips, soups, smoothies, popsicles, muffins, and even desserts. Try our Chocolate Cherry Kale Breakfast Cookies, Chocolate Avocado Pudding, and Crock Pot Stuffed Granny Smith Apples.      

Savory Veg Power Pancakes

Savory Veg Power Pancakes

Last but not least, keep trying. Experts say kids may need to try a food 10-15 times before they will accept it. Continue to present healthy foods in new and positive ways. And most importantly, model healthy eating behaviors yourself, by allowing your children to observe you enjoying vegetables, fruits, and other healthy dishes.        

Gardening in the Fall: Thoughts From an Organic Farmer in South Carolina

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by Mark Spicer, Assistant Organic Farm Manager

Based on our experience at WP Rawl, we believe large farmers and small gardeners alike are presented with an ideal growing environment during the fall here in the Midlands of South Carolina. When most growers in the country are starting to think about winding down and preparing for winter, we Southern growers can start thinking about all the bountiful homegrown meals we can make for our friends and family. Ultimately, that’s why we at WP Rawl do what we do. Knowing that our family, friends, and neighbors are choosing our product when they go to the grocery store makes all our hard work worthwhile.

First steps

So what can you do to turn your plot of land or corner in your backyard into a bountiful harvest? Well, first of all you’ll need to prepare the ground by turning the soil over with either a tiller or a shovel. The goal is to break up the large chunks of sod or dirt so that you’re left with a smooth, weed-free plot of ground.  Turning the soil helps break up large clots of dirt, get rid of weeds, and creates a nice smooth seedbed ready for planting.

Next, you’ll want to take a look at your soil and think about how your vegetables will get the nutrients they need to grow. If you have sandy soil, you’ll need to fertilize and water your plants more often since sandy soils don’t hold nutrients or moisture well. If the soil is harder to break up and sticks together in clumps, then you’ll have to work a little harder to prepare your plot, but it also means that most likely you have better conditions to grow vegetables.

Compost

Compost is the greatest material asset we have to improve our soils here on the organic farm at Rawl. After just three years of mixing compost into our soil before planting, we have seen a massive increase in productivity and plant health. In my opinion, adding as much well-made compost to your garden as possible is the best thing you can do for the crops you plan to grow. There are local companies that sell or give away compost, and it is also sold in 1 to 3.8 cubic foot bags at most large hardware stores. The minimum I would suggest to add is 3” of compost on top of your garden. There are many gardening sites that do calculations for you, but an example would be: 2 cubic feet of compost covers an 8 foot by 8 foot garden plot with 3 inches of compost.

Fall Veggies

Now we get to the fun part: planting! Here in the Midlands, we have few limitations as to what can grow well in the fall. If your plot is ready mid-July to early August, you’ll have the largest selection of vegetables to choose from. We at WP Rawl primarily grow “leafy greens”: kale, collards, and mustard greens, along with cilantro, parsley, green onions, and leeks. They are incredibly popular, especially during the holidays, and this time of year is well suited for their growth. Along with leafy greens, lettuces, broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, beets, carrots, turnips, and radishes are perfect candidates for fall gardening; they all thrive in cool weather and even improve in flavor with a little frost. It’s even possible for backyard gardeners in this area to start late-season tomatoes in July and August if they’re ambitious. They require more care and knowledge than most vegetables, but there isn’t anything quite like eating a homegrown tomato fresh off the vine.

Checking recently planted seeds.

Checking recently planted seeds.

Root vegetables, such as beets and carrots, should be started from seed in relatively weed-free soil any time from August 1st to mid-September. Spinach and lettuce can also be grown easily from seed, but planting them as transplants will also work. Vegetable transplants are generally 4 to 6-week-old plants grown in multi-cell trays or small pots started in a climate-controlled greenhouse. Most nurseries and hardware stores will probably be running sales on their transplants in the fall because they don’t want to keep these plants through the winter. Leafy greens (kale, collards, mustard greens, etc.) will grow better if you plant them as transplants.

Making It Grow

After you’ve prepared your soil, spread your compost, and planted your seeds and transplants, the most important thing you’ll want to do is keep the soil moist and weed-free. Hoeing or pulling weeds once or twice a week is ideal, and also a great family activity that gets everyone outside and involved with the bounty to come. Watering twice per day while it’s still hot should be enough to get your seeds to pop up and your transplants to take root. You want to keep the ground moist, but not so wet that you leave puddles.  As your garden matures and fall really sets in, cooler weather and more frequent rain means you won’t have to water as much.

If you see that your plants are slowing down in their growth, a tablespoon of organic garden fertilizer per plant is plenty to get them going again. If you’d like to fertilize your entire garden on a regular basis to ensure consistent growth, you have a couple options. The first: add about an inch of compost to your garden every 2 to 3 weeks; rake it into the soil around the plants gently and be careful not to get it on the leaves of the plant because the concentrated nutrient levels may burn the pllant if it sticks. The second option: every 2 to 3 weeks sprinkle your organic fertilizer of choice at the suggested amount (there are many options at the hardware store or nursery to choose from, but a standard organic vegetable garden fertilizer will work just fine).

Depending on what you grow and the conditions of your soil, you should be able to start harvesting the spinach and leafy greens after about 30 to 40 days. Picking individual leaves, instead of cutting down the whole plant, will allow you to harvest for several months or until a hard freeze sets in. For the root vegetables, radishes will be ready in 20 to 30 days, about 45 days for baby beets and carrots, and 60 to 70 days for them to fully mature.

Summer/Fall Leek.

Summer/Fall Leek.

It is a big responsibility to care for a garden, but it doesn’t need to be seen as a hardship. I've discovered that all work is better and usually more enjoyable when shared with others. Everything from land preparation to planting to watering to pulling weeds offers the whole family an opportunity to get involved in an incredibly rewarding outdoors activity. Some of the best experiences I had as a child came from helping my mom cut lettuce for that night’s dinner. Here in the Midlands, nature has given us the gift of beautiful and often bountiful fall seasons. I would encourage families and individuals alike, to try a fall garden in the South at least once. I sincerely believe you’ll be amazed at what a little hard work and commitment can produce.  I encourage anyone with questions about gardening, or wanting to share their experience, to please reach out to me (mark.spicer@rawl.net). I would love to hear from you!

Happy growing!

-- Mark

PS: Are you growing a fall garden and posting about it on social media? Tag us in your photos so we can cheer you on! @WPRawl and @naturesgreens

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Pregnancy Nutrition: Eating Healthy While Pregnant

by Dr. Sonali Ruder (@thefoodiephysician)

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Pregnancy is truly a life-changing experience.  During pregnancy, your body goes through profound changes and certain nutrients are needed to fuel those changes.  Following a well-balanced diet rich in nutritious, whole foods is an important aspect of a healthy pregnancy.  It helps increase your chances of having a smooth pregnancy and also gives your developing baby the healthiest possible start in life.  Basically, a healthy diet helps make a healthy baby!

During pregnancy, you need to consume more calories and protein than before you were pregnant.  You also need to consume more micronutrients including folic acid, iron and calcium.  These are essential for the proper growth and development of your baby as well as for your own health during pregnancy.  It’s recommended that pregnant women take a prenatal vitamin to fill in any nutritional gaps.  But did you know that you can get these nutrients from foods such as leafy greens? 

One cup of chopped turnip greens provides a whopping 107 micrograms of folate, which is 27% of the recommended daily amount.  It also provides 105 milligrams of calcium, which is 10% of the recommended daily amount.  Other greens like kale, collards and mustard greens all provide these nutrients as well, in varying amounts.  In addition, leafy green vegetables also provide an array of other important nutrients including fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, potassium, manganese and copper. 

Folate is one of the most important vitamins needed in pregnancy.  It’s essential for the synthesis of DNA and for proper cell division.  It’s especially important for the development of the neural tube, which forms the baby’s brain and spinal cord.  Folate is found naturally in foods like leafy green vegetables, lentils, asparagus, and beets.  Folic acid is a form of folate that is used in dietary supplements and foods.  In the United States, breads, cereals, flours, pasta, rice and other grain products are supplemented with folic acid. 

Iron is necessary for making hemoglobin, the protein in your red blood cells that carries oxygen to your organs and tissues as well as to your baby.  During pregnancy, you need much larger amounts of iron to support the growth of your baby and placenta.  Like folate, many grain products are supplemented with iron.  Leafy green vegetables such as kale, mustard greens and spinach also provide iron.  However, the type of iron found in plant-based foods (non-heme iron) is not as easily absorbed by our bodies as the iron found in meat, seafood and poultry (heme iron).  A simple way to increase the amount of iron absorbed from vegetables is to eat vitamin C-rich foods with your meals.  Vitamin C greatly increases the amount of iron your body absorbs.  So the next time you’re sautéing some kale or mustard greens, sprinkle some lemon juice on top or throw in some bell peppers, which provide a good amount of vitamin C. 

Calcium is the most abundant mineral in our bodies.  Although 99% of it is stored in our bones and teeth, calcium serves many vital functions including maintaining a normal heartbeat, contracting muscles, transmitting nerve impulses, and clotting blood. It’s important for pregnant women to get enough calcium, especially during the third trimester when your baby’s bones are rapidly growing and their teeth are forming.  If you don’t get enough calcium in your diet, your body will withdraw calcium from your own bones to supply your baby’s needs.  Kale, collards, turnip greens and mustard greens are all a very good natural source of calcium. Calcium is also added to many foods like orange juice, plant-based milks, tofu, cereals and bread.

So how can you incorporate more leafy green vegetables into your diet?  Leafy greens can be added to a wide variety of dishes to add a boost of nutrition.  You can enjoy them raw in salads or add them to dishes like soups, stews, pasta sauces, and stir-fries.  Smoothies are another great way to incorporate greens into your diet.  During pregnancy, there may be times when you don’t have much of an appetite and cold drinks may be better tolerated.  To make a delicious smoothie, simply toss a handful of chopped greens to a blender along with your favorite fruit (like mango, pineapple, apple or watermelon) and some Greek yogurt or almond butter for a boost of protein and healthy fat.  Add ice and blend away!

More information and recipes can be found in my cookbooks, Natural Pregnancy Cookbook:  Over 125 Nutritious Recipes for a Healthy Pregnancy and Natural Baby Food: Over 150 Wholesome, Nutritious Recipes For Your Baby and Toddler

www.thefoodiephysician.com

 

Providing Nutrition to Your Child From Day 1 + Delicious Summer Recipes

Ensuring that you have a healthy diet that provides all of the nutrients that you need is always important for one’s health, but even more so when for a woman who is pregnant. She is the sole source of nutrition for her growing baby. The very best thing that she can do for her future child throughout her pregnancy is to ensure that she is eating healthy snacks and meals that include foods that are full of essential vitamins and nutrients.

Did you know?

According to the American Pregnancy Association, healthy eating is absolutely necessary and critical to a baby’s growth throughout pregnancy. It is important that any mama-to-be refine her eating habits to ensure that she is receiving adequate nutrition for not only the health of her growing baby, but for her health as well. This means eating from a variety of food groups including fruits and veggies, breads and grains, proteins, and dairy products and drinking at least 10 cups of fluids a day.

Luckily for you, many of the nutrients essential to a baby’s development are easy to find in some of your favorite fruits, vegetables, and leafy greens! Adding in a heaping handful of nutrients to your diet has never been easier or more delicious, especially with the recipes that we have put together for you.

Kale Yeah

One of the healthiest leafy greens that you can eat, kale, is super beneficial to the growth of a baby while still in the womb. It is a great source of Vitamin K, Vitamin A, and Vitamin C, in addition to folic acid, calcium, fiber, and iron. If you’re pregnant, one of the best ways to start off the day is with our Green Apple & Kale Smoothie Bowl, an easy-to-prep and delicious meal for breakfast.

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Green Apple & Kale Smoothie Bowl

Prep Time: 5 Minutes

Cook Time: 0 Minutes

Our Veggie, Mango, & Pistachio Stir Fry is another recipe that is full of nutrients that a baby needs for development while in the womb and is a perfect meal to put together for lunch or for dinner. The veggies pack a powerful punch in this recipe by providing vitamins A, B6, C, and K as well as folate, fiber, calcium, and more.

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Veggie, Mango, & Pistachio Stir Fry

Prep Time: 10 Minutes

Cook Time: 10 Minutes

If you’re currently pregnant or hoping to grow your family soon, how have you changed your eating habits to get the best nutrients possible to your growing baby? We’d love to hear all of your tips and suggestions for incorporating additional nutrients into your daily eating habits. Take photos of your culinary creations that are perfect for mamas-to-be and share with us on Instagram and Facebook by using #backtofresh!

If you’re currently pregnant or hoping to grow your family soon, how have you changed your eating habits to get the best nutrients possible to your growing baby? We’d love to hear all of your tips and suggestions for incorporating additional nutrients into your daily eating habits. Take photos of your culinary creations that are perfect for mamas-to-be and share with us on Instagram and Facebook by using #backtofresh!

Easy Meal Ideas for Any Time of Day

One of the most difficult challenges with putting a fresh, healthy meal on the table is when you’re preparing the meal for just yourself. Most recipes that you come across are geared towards serving several people rather than one person. We know that it can make things difficult when you’re preparing more food than you can eat during one meal or if you’re spending hours in the kitchen to cook dinner for one.

We suggest looking for two types of recipes: ones that are quick and easy with just a few ingredients, or a recipe that prepares enough food that you can enjoy leftovers throughout the week. 

Recipes you want to avoid? The ones that call for ingredients that you rarely use, ones that take hours to prepare, and ones that will spoil faster than you can eat the leftovers. Save those recipes for when you’re hosting a dinner party with your friends or when you have family in town.

Breakfast

Our Wake Up to Kale” Breakfast Salad, ready in under 15 minutes, is a great breakfast to prepare for yourself in the mornings. It’s a quick recipe that incorporates many ingredients that you likely already have on hand in your kitchen along with a healthy portion of our Natures Greens® Kale Greens.

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Lunch

Ready in under 30 minutes, our Very Veggie Unfried Brown Rice is a healthier version of your favorite Chinese takeout dish. You can customize this recipe to your liking by adding or eliminating particular veggies or by adjusting the amount of each spice that you choose to include. Easily double or triple this recipe to make leftovers that you can dine on later in the week or pack for a healthy lunch option at work.

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Dinner

Sit down with an incredibly delicious dinner this week with our Kale Salmon Spring Quinoa Bowl which you can put together quickly after a long day of work. With fresh ingredients like kale and strawberries, and a helping of salmon, this tasty meal is one of our favorite healthy options for dinner.

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These cooking for one tips and recipes can help you eat at home more often, help you eliminate food waste from preparing too much food, and will help you choose fresh, healthy options rather than resorting to quick microwave meals for one. Looking for more healthy recipes? Browse through our collection of recipes on our website, http://www.rawl.net/recipes.aspx.

How do you cook for one?

Please share your own tips and tricks for preparing meals for one with us! Show us by tagging us on Instagram @naturesgreens and use #backtofresh. Your tip could be selected and featured on our account!