Healthy root vegetable recipes

Oct 12, 2009 at 3:10 p.m. ET

Root vegetables are packed with health-boosting nutrients and loaded with comfort food flavors. These varied veggies are also deliciously versatile and can easily become a go-to staple in your family's diet. Keep reading to learn more about root vegetables and give these four healthy and family-friendly root vegetable recipes a try.

Sweet Potato

Root vegetables are a healthy starch

What vegetable food group do many dieters avoid but which is actually quite nutrient-packed and even helps reduce cravings? If you answered "root vegetables", you would be correct! Unfortunately, many people shy away from these hearty vegetables due to their starch content because they believe eating them will cause weight gain. Nothing could be further from the truth!   

Rave-worthy root vegetables

Root vegetables are literally the tasty roots of a plant (hence the name "root vegetable") that are edible and highly nutritious. You can even eat or juice the greens of the plant, which are also dense in nutrients. Some common root vegetables are sweet potatoes, yams, parsnips, beets, carrots, turnips, radishes and rutabagas.

Root veggies are loaded with vitamins and minerals

Not only are many root vegetables such as sweet potatoes and carrots high in vitamin A or beta-carotene, which improves the health of the skin and prevents acne and other skin disorders, but they are also high in vitamins C, D, E, and K as well as fiber and other phytonutrients.

Health benefits of root vegetables

Eating root vegetables can aid in weight loss as they reduce the craving for sweets. Root vegetables contain natural sugars that elevate blood sugar gradually rather than delivering a quick, unhealthy jolt as would be provided by simple, refined carbohydrates.

Root veggies are also healing to the stomach, spleen, pancreas and reproductive organs and aid in the removal of toxins from the body. Some claim that eating these vegetables may relieve menstrual cramps and PMS as well as even help lactating women produce more milk.

Root vegetables can keep you grounded

Ayurvedic doctors and practitioners believe that root vegetables literally "root" you to the earth. When it gets colder and you feel the need for more warm, grounding foods, adding root vegetables to your family's diet can deliciously benefit both your body and soul.

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