Being able to grow your own produce is a great way to eat healthier and save money at the same time. Not only are you able to ensure that your food doesn’t contain any additives, it also comes out much cheaper than sourcing it from the grocery store or farmer’s market. Here are the healthiest vegetables to grow in your garden.
It doesn’t matter if you have an indoor, container or outdoor garden, you can grow your own edible plants at home.
This way you know you always have the right ingredients for the dishes you want to make.
This green leafy vegetable is popular among those on a diet because it is low in carbs and calories. It doesn’t contain any fats nor cholesterol. And, it is loaded with nutrients to help keep you healthy.
As if that’s not enough, spinach helps boost your brain power. And, comes with antioxidants that fight free radicals. In doing so, they aid in warding of cancer and other age-related diseases.
Spinach is probably one of the most popular veggies around because it’s very versatile. Its tastes much better than kale for most people because there’s no bitter flavor. Plus, they’re easy to enjoy for your salad, as a side or in smoothie ford.
Anyone watching their waistline will also love to know that spinach is one of the better vegetable sources of protein. It also has a good amount of insoluble fiber which helps with digestion and weight loss.
For gardening enthusiast, you’ll be happy to know that you can plant your own spinach to eat. You do need to use soil that drains well. And, ideally have a soil pH of around 6.5 to 7 to achieve optimal growth.
Don’t forget to keep them spinach about a foot away from one another so they have room to grow their full size.
And, come harvest time, only pick the leaves. This lets the plant keep growing without you having to replant new ones.
Broccoli is another superfood you can plant in your edible garden. Though unlike spinach, this is a veggie that people either love or hate.
It’s former President Obama’s favorite vegetable. But, also the one that former President George H.W. Bush famously hates.
That said, it’s comes with a lot of health benefits including 2.3 grams of fiber, vitamin C and potassium. It has been shown to help fight cancer while also aiding in lowering your cholesterol level.
Additionally, it’s low in calories with one 34 per cup. It’s chewy nature also make you work more as you eat which slows down the amount of food your put in your mouth. This helps reduce total calorie consumption during meals to help you maintain or lose weight.
Broccoli can be grown on the ground or in containers. This latter is a better option if you don’t have a lot a space for your garden. Adding compost and having organic matter in your soil improves its changes of optimum growth.
Like almost all plants, they don’t do well when the winter time comes. So, if you happen to live in a area with a lot of snowfall, you can plant your broccoli seeds indoors and then transplant them outside after 6 to 8 weeks when they’ve grown. This will allow them to be tough enough to handle light frost.
Kale is somewhat similar to spinach because of their green, leafy exterior. They do have very different flavor profiles. But, are both very healthy foods everyone should include in their diets.
it is very low in calories and comes with some protein. This makes them useful for anyone looking to lose weight.
Kale is one of the healthiest foods in the world because it contains a lot of vitamins and minerals. Among them are its high vitamin A, C and K content. It has also been shown to boost brain power, help regulate blood sugar and control appetite.
This green leafy vegetable is best planted during the spring or summer. Having the seeds in during this time makes them ready to harvest by fall and winter. This helps you avoid the cold and frost that can destroy a lot of produce.
The bright red color of tomatoes provides you with lycopene, which is a powerful antioxidant that that protects your body from heart disease, cancer and vision problems.
Tomatoes also contain a good amount of vitamin C, potassium, vitamin K1 and folate.
Tomatoes are a popular veggie for gardens because they’re easier than many other plants to grow. You can place them on the ground or in containers. They do need some depth for them to flourish. Ideally, you want to give them between 18 to 24 inches in depth when placing them in pots.
Lettuce leaves are a popular diet food. They’re often found in salads because each cup only contains 5 calories. That lets you eat as much as you want without gaining weight.
One thing of note is that they lettuce don’t contain as much nutrients as their greener colored cousins. But, they do still give you a good amount of vitamin A, and some vitamin C and K as well.
Lettuce is one of the more resilient vegetables around. This gives it the ability to withstand snow. So, you won’t need to worry about it during winter season. Although, you do need to protect it from strong winds during this time.
Another option is to plant the seeds indoors during the winter time and grow them indoors for a month or two. Then move them outside when springtime comes around.
Red Bell Peppers
Red bell peppers add a different flavor profile to foods. This gives you a different taste and texture to greens which is a nice change.
Their bright color makes them lovely to look at and add a decorative factor to your food presentation. But, they’re not just for eye appeal. Their pigmentation is a result of the high amount of vitamin A and C found in these veggies. In fact, red bell peppers contain over 3 times as much vitamin A as your body needs. It also gives you 93% of your daily vitamin C needs.
Not one of our favorites. But, nevertheless, it’s a healthy edible plant you can grow in your garden. Brussels sprouts have been a great accompaniment to many different foods. They’re low in calories, contain no fat and offer 4 grams of protein per cut.
You also get a lot of vitamin C, and other nutrients like vitamins A and B6.
Brussels sprouts can be grown in containers or frames. They need at least half an inch of soil and prefer to be spaced out 6 inches from one another.
Beets are one of the most popular veggies for salads. But, before you enjoy some, make sure you’re away that it may turn your pee or poop pink (or some reddish color).
This doesn’t always happen to everyone. But, if your body can’t breakdown betanin, the red coloring will appear when you go to the bathroom.
The good news is, it’s harmless and just needs to exit your system. Depending on how much you each and how fast your body metabolizes it, it can take between a day to 2-3 days.
That said, beet is a cost-effective plant to for your garden because you can harvest both its greens and its root. You can enjoy beet with your salad or as a side dish.
Sweet potatoes are root vegetables. But, unlike most of the others in our list, it is a high carb veggie. This means that it contains a bit more calories than greens and other produce.
Each cup gives you 114 calories. This is the equivalent of a 5 inch long sweet potato. So, if you eat a good amount of it, especially in mashed form, which is easy to do because it’s delicious, it may cause you to gain weight.
For this reason, many weight conscious eaters consider sweet potatoes more of a starch than a vegetable in their meal plate.
Sweet potatoes are a much better option compared to your regular white potatoes. Their bright orange color gives you nearly 400% of the vitamin A your body needs on daily basis. Similarly, they also come with more fiber which helps you manage your weight.
Like regular potatoes, sweet ones can be prone to rotting. So, it’s important to use well-drained soil. This is especially important if your area experiences a considerable amount of rainfall. Adding compost also helps.
For the backyard gardener, it’s also worth noting that sweet potatoes take a while to grow. This means you’ll need to be ready to wait 4 to 6 months before harvesting.