Your Spring Produce Guide

Your Spring Produce Guide

Plants and flowers start to bloom in spring, which means your local farmers will start to see new fruits and vegetables popping up, too. Prepare for a new batch of springtime produce with this guide. By choosing what’s in season, you’ll ensure that your pantry is stocked with the most fresh and flavorful fruits and veggies on the market.

Artichokes

In season from March-June.

The artichoke comes in at number seven on the USDA’s list of the 20 foods that are richest in antioxidants. Your body will love the flood of feel-good antioxidants, as well as the many grams of fiber and folate packed into this crunchy leafy green. Add it into your springtime grocery list for an interesting taste amongst your routine side-dish recipes.

Asparagus

In season from February-June.

Spring — and 50-degree soil temperatures — marks the beginning of asparagus season. These tasty stalks boast a slew of nutrients, including vitamins A, C, E and K. It’s also a great source of glutathione, which breaks down carcinogens and helps to fight bone, breast, lung and colon cancers, among others.

Blackberries

In season from May-October.

Like many tangy fruits, the blackberry is packed with vitamin C to boost your immune system in the spring, a time when it needs fortifying against allergies and other common warm-weather illnesses. Surprisingly, the blackberry also helps to tighten your skin. Should you be looking to freshen up your face this spring, this is certainly the fruit for you.

Cherries

In season from April-July.

Cherries do more than top off a good sundae. When fresh, these little red fruits boast a wealth of benefits for you and your body. For one, they’re a natural source of melatonin, which helps you drift off into restful sleep. They also burn through belly fat and help reduce the pain of arthritis for those who suffer from achy joints.

Fava Beans

In season from March-July.

Fava beans might have an unfamiliar name, but they’re very similar to the in-fashion edamame beans served at restaurants around the world. They’re a great dietary option for vegetarians, as they’re loaded with proteins. A quarter-cup of fava beans boasts almost 20 percent of the daily value suggested of iron, potassium, and vitamin B1, among other body-bettering nutrients.

Nectarines

In season from May-October.

Come spring, you don’t have to depend on carrots to provide you with the beta-carotene you need to maintain your eyesight. Instead, depend on tasty nectarines to do the trick. These juicy fruits pack all of the beta-carotene you need. This antioxidant becomes vitamin A in the body, which sharpens your eyesight while also maintaining reproductive health and keeping bones strong and healthy.

Peas

In season from April-November.

There’s a reason your mom told you to eat your peas: these little green veggies have it all. They’ve got a wealth of everything from vitamin C and folate to magnesium, iron and potassium. Because they’re low in fat and high in just about everything else, peas make a great addition to any weight loss regimen. They’re high in protein, so you’ll feel full after adding them to any meal.

Rhubarb

In season from April-July.

The rhubarb is technically a vegetable, which might surprise you considering that it’s often an ingredient in jams, pies, tarts and other sweet recipes. Don’t be fooled by its sweet nature, either: the rhubarb is low in fat and cholesterol for those who want to improve their cardiovascular health. It’s also chock full of vitamin K, which improves brain function and delays or staves off the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.

Strawberries

In season from March-November.

Strawberries are bright red, but they can help make your teeth white. These sweet berries have a wealth of fiber, which makes you feel fuller for longer. This means that strawberries might also aid in weight loss. If you just want to improve your health, the strawberry is a great addition to your diet: it fights inflammation, heart disease and many of the cancers that plague our generation.

What fresh produce do you look forward to every spring? Let me know in the comments below.

Photo: Liz West

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