Is it salad night? Or are you beginning a new meal routine?

Looking for healthy options can be a challenge. There are many things to consider when preparing a healthy meal. Will it taste good? Can I eat this every day? What health benefits are there?

With so many options, what would you be your best choice?

1. Kale


Kale has become very popular; it’s a common main ingredient in green juices and the foundation to new recipes. But why is it getting the spotlight?

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That is due to its nutritional value. It is rich in vitamins A, C, K, B6 as well as calcium and magnesium. Sure, it may taste a bit bitter, but there are ways to counteract that, from blending it in a juice to cooking it on the frying pan.

2. Watercress


Watercress is an aquatic plant found near springs and slow moving streams. Have you tried watercress before? It tastes like spinach! Watercress is a great source of nutrients. It actually has four times more beta-carotene than the apple. Try mixing it into your salad next time.

3. Spinach


What would life be like without spinach? Maybe Popeye wouldn’t have ever been able to save Olive Oyl. Imagine what a tragedy that would have been.

Did you know that according to the United States Department of Agriculture, a 180-gram serving of boiled spinach provides 6.43 mg of iron? That’s probably how Popeye was able to get toned so easily.

4. Collard Greens


Have you been to a barbeque lately? You probably had a side of collard greens. These healthy little green leaves are rich with nutrients such as vitamins A, C and K. They are great for a salad or to have as a side for most dinnertime recipes.

5. Chard.


Do you like to sauté? Chard may be the leafy green for you. This green makes a great source for both vitamin A and C.

6. Leaf Lettuce.


Romaine. Red leaf. Green leaf. As long as there’s a leaf, leaf lettuce is the way to go. You get a slightly different taste with each of these leaves, but they still pack the vitamin A and folate you are looking for to keep yourself healthy.

7. Arugula


Low on calories and filled with flavor, this leaf is made out of 90 percent water. That makes it a great leafy green to help you rehydrate.

Are you looking for other foods that will help you to live healthier? The best way to be certain about what works for you is to ask your physician.

If you’re curious as to what other foods can be beneficial for you, reach out to your primary care physician for advice. If you are local to Southern California and are in search of a primary care physician, call (800) USC-CARE (800-872-2273) or visit www.keckmedicine.org/request-an-appointment/ to schedule an appointment.

By Leonard Kim