What??? I’m suggesting a vegetable to curb a sugar craving?  Hang with me for a bit here . . .

Find it harder to eat fresh, seasonal vegetables in the winter?.  It can be, but there ARE a few delicious vegetables perfect for this time of the year.  sweet potatoes

Sweet potatoes and squash are two of my favorite winter vegetables.

I bet many of you don’t regularly consume these, so I’m here to convince you to give them a try.

This week we’ll start with sweet potatoes.  If your only memory of sweet potatoes is the sticky, marshmallow covered casserole at Thanksgiving, you are truly missing out.  Sweet potatoes are so much more.

So what’s to love about sweet potatoes?  More like what’s NOT to love?

Sweet potatoes are:

  • High in beta carotene (which helps protect us against colds, infections and cancer!)
  • Good source of potassium, iron, niacin, folate (especially good for expectant moms) Magnesium (heart disease protector)Vitamin B6 (another heart disease protector) and vitamin C
  • Contains fiber to help fill you up and keep your digestive tract running as it should
  • Because they are sweet, they are often helpful in curbing sugar cravings.  If you add more sweet potatoes to your diet, soon you’ll find yourself naturally craving sugar less often.  (Secret little health coach trick I’m sharing here – wink)
  • Easy to digest – ever stopped to think about why they are such a common baby food?

Curious about the difference (or is there a difference) between sweet potatoes and yams?  I was too, so I did a bit of research and this is what I discovered.

Turns out that the sweet potato and the yam are two different vegetables.  A yam is a tropical vegetable grown in West Africa and Asia, whereas a sweet potato is what we grow in the US.  BUT, through the years, we’ve begun using the term yam in the US to identify sweet potato varieties that are sweeter, moister and orange fleshed.

And get this, I know this will just kill you, but it’s actually better for your body to enjoy sweet potatoes with a bit of fat (bacon, olive oil, butter or cream).  It helps our body absorb the beta carotene.  Bummer, right?

Throughout this month, I’ll be sharing a few of my favorite sweet potato recipes, but for now I’ll leave you with this tasty and simple treat:  Sweet potato chips

Ready to start learning about essential oils in 2014?  What a great way to keep yourself and your family naturally healthy and happy!  Check out the Oil of the Month Club – we are learning all about Eucalyptus in January – mine hasn’t arrived yet, so no personal experience yet, but from what I’ve been reading, it’s a great oil for sore muscles – which since I’ve ramped up my workouts this month,  can sure use some help!

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