Food, like most other things in life, follows trends. Foods move in and out of the spotlight (can you say Kale?), take up more or less space at the market and are featured or forgotten on restaurant menus as the years go by.
This ebb and flow of food in our lives is often just a matter of taste and preference, so what happens when healthy foods are forgotten or become the victims of slander in the media, thanks to the newest study or popular diet? Just because they’ve fallen out of favor doesn’t mean they are any less nutritious. In fact, they may be just what you’re looking for when it comes to weight loss, heart health, budget-friendly meals and more!
Here are 5 forgotten foods that we think are worth remembering for your health and wallet:
- Rutabaga – He may have the funny name and shape, but this relative newcomer to the vegetable garden (the result of a turnip and cabbage cross pollination incident a few hundred years back) is packing some nutrition! He has vitamin C, some B vitamins and a good amount of fiber and can be an easy swap in some of your favorite recipes like these. He is often confused with Turnip, another healthy, yet forgotten food.
- Cauliflower – Yes, she’s a “white food,” but she hopes you won’t discriminate against her because of it. This cruciferous girl is a delicious addition to your meals either raw or cooked; she is low in calories with the added benefit of potassium and folate for a healthy heart.
- Celery – This slim veggie has sadly become the poster-vegetable for crash diets over the years, and many people have forgotten her rich history and health benefits. Celery was originally a medicinal staple (as far back as Ancient Greece) but can now add plenty of flavor and fiber, as well as some vitamin C and potassium, to your diet. She’s always easy to find.
- Amaranth and Millet – These and many other whole grains have been gracing tables for thousands of years, but they are often forgotten or passed over in favor more common or popular grains like Rice and Quinoa. All whole grains offer a variety of vital nutrients, including fiber, some protein and B vitamins. In addition, several, like delicate Amaranth, are gluten-free grains.
- Sardine – We understand, you may not have ever been a fan of this little guy, but he is a rock star in other parts of the world, so it may be worth the reintroduction. Sardine is one of the best ways to get omega 3 fatty acids in your diet. Yes, he packs quite a heart-healthy punch! That’s not all. Sardine also boasts a wide range of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin D, selenium and calcium. Also try the similarly forgotten (or avoided) Anchovy for omega 3s.
If you’re ready for something new, it may just be time to take a new look at forgotten foods like these.
Also, look for Brussels Sprouts, Beets, Barley and other similarly forgotten foods. For ideas on how to add forgotten foods into your diet, try these dishes from participating Healthy Dining restaurants: