By Stephen T. Sinatra, M.D., F.A.C.C., F.A.C.N., C.N.S., C.B.T.
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Steamed vegetables are some of the healthiest foods we can consume, ideally every day! I especially like to steam cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, Brussels sprouts and cauliflower because they are so full of cancer-protective plant compounds as well as vitamins K, A and C, which help promote cardiovascular health and immunity.
Feel free to experiment with all kinds of other vegetables like asparagus, spinach, kale, carrots, peppers, summer squashes, snap peas, green beans, etc. Most vegetables, while high in vital nutrients, are low-calorie and low-glycemic, meaning that eating them instead of sugary, processed foods will help prevent insulin resistance, diabetes, obesity and heart disease. Vegetables are also full of insoluble fiber, which keeps our digestive tracts healthy and enhances our overall states of health.
Whichever veggies you choose, be sure to use organic ones when possible to avoid pesticide residues.
- Brussels sprouts
- 1-3 cloves garlic, chopped
- Extra virgin olive oil, to taste
- Sea salt and pepper
- Lemon juice (optional)
Prepare vegetables. Soak them all in water for a few minutes to wash them. Slice cauliflower and broccoli into florets; peel skin off of the stems and slice tender parts of stems into bite-sized rounds. Slice ends off of Brussels sprouts. Chop or slice garlic. To steam veggies, add one-inch of water to the bottom of a 3 to 4 quart saucepan, then place vegetables into steamer basket (don’t worry if you don’t have one, just place vegetables in the saucepan). Sprinkle chopped garlic over them, to taste) Put a lid on the pan and steam veggies on high heat for 5-10 minutes (so that they are still bright with color and al dente, i.e. not too soft or mushy). Using a slotted spoon or thongs, transfer veggies to a plate, then drizzle with extra virgin olive oil, adding fresh lemon juice, sea salt (very little if you are concerned about your blood pressure) and pepper, if you like.
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