Roots like carrots, sweet potatoes, and turnips, are a rich source of nutritious complex carbohydrates. Instead of upsetting blood sugar levels like refined sweet foods do, they help regulate them.
Why Eat More Root Veggies?
Long roots – carrots, parsnips, burdock, and daikon radish – are excellent blood purifiers and can help improve circulation in the body. Round roots – turnips, radishes, beets, and rutabagas – nourish the stomach, spleen, pancreas, and reproductive organs.
Which root vegetables do you eat most?
If you’re like most of the world, it’s carrots and potatoes. Here are a few others to explore:
- Beets contain an abundance of antioxidants and are highly detoxifying.
- Burdock is considered a powerful blood purifier. This long, thin veggie is a staple in Asian and health food stores.
- Celeriac, also known as celery root, is rich in fiber and with a respectable amount of antioxidants.
- Jicama is crunchy and refreshing and contains a generous amount of vitamin C. It’s a favorite in its native Mexico and South America.
- Onions are rich in antioxidants and other phytonutrients, making them prized for their ability to strengthen the immune system.
- Parsnips, which look like giant white carrots, boast a sweet, earthy taste. They’ve also got plenty of fiber, vitamin C, folic acid, niacin, thiamine, magnesium, and potassium.
- Radish is an excellent source of vitamin C. It’s also rich in calcium, molybdenum, and folic acid.
- Sweet Potatoes contain unsurpassed levels of beta-carotene and are also rich in vitamin C, phytonutrients, and fiber.
- Carrots also high in beta-carotene are abundant in fiber, the B vitamins, and vitamin K and C.
Excited to add more roots to your diet? Try raw radishes and jicama in your summer salads for extra crunch. Grill onions on the grill to bring out their caramelized sweetness. And, roast any roots cut into bite-sized cubes tossed with olive oil, salt and pepper in a 375º oven for 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
The abundance of summer's sweetness at the farmer's market was my inspiration behind this anti-inflammatory summer carrot and tomato soup. The bitter earthiness of cumin and turmeric is balanced beautifully with the sweet veggies.
Summer Carrot and Tomato Soup
This simple soup is loaded with anti-inflammatory spices and vegetables. Serve warm as an appetizer for dinner or a main course for lunch with a salad.
1 T olive oil
1 inch piece of ginger root, peeled and minced
1/4 t cumin
1 t turmeric
1 t salt
1 bunch very fresh carrots (about 5-6 carrots), washed and cut into 1/2" slices
3 c vegetable broth, homemade or organic boxed broth
12 cherry tomatoes, sliced in half, or 1 large tomato cut into 1/2" cubes
Pour olive oil into an 5-quart stock pot. Over medium heat, warm the ginger, cumin, turmeric and salt. Add the carrots and stir well, coating. Add the vegetable broth. Cover pot, raise heat and bring to a boil. When boiling, lower heat to simmer for 20 minutes. Using an immersion blender or a high-powered blender, blend soup until smooth and creamy. To serve, top soup with tomato slices.