While there’s a lot of noise in nutritional science with changing and conflicting information, one truth stands the test of time: eat more vegetables. It is widely accepted that a mostly plant-based diet with high intake of vegetables, and other nutrient-rich plant foods may reduce the risk of oxidative stress-related diseases. Aim for a variety.

Artichokes are a fun vegetable with high polyphenol content. What are polyphenols? Polyphenols are antioxidants, compounds that can fight the harmful effects of free radicals. Free radicals cause cell and DNA damage, so eating foods which are rich in antioxidants can help prevent damage and downstream effects. So, add a cup of antioxidant-rich artichoke hearts to your food plan.

Growing up in the 70’s, I remember my mother serving artichokes at dinner parties and I thought they were the epitome of chic.

Greek mythology holds Zeus responsible for the creation of the artichoke. After being rejected by a beautiful young woman, the god turned his object of affection into a thorny and difficult thistle. Tough on the outside and soft on the inside, artichokes are well versed in the game of hard-to-get, but their history as an aphrodisiac is mostly due to folklore, though it can’t hurt, right? Artichokes have a mild flavor and work well in a very wide variety of dishes.

Artichokes have a mild flavor and work well in a very wide variety of dishes. How to prepare: steam, grill, or open a jar of organic artichoke hearts. When shopping, look for a vibrant green choke that “talks back” when you snap the leaves. The more defined the squeak, the fresher the vegetable. Artichokes have a mild flavor and work well in a very wide variety of dishes

Nutrition info: One medium artichoke contains 60 calories, 13 grams of carbohydrate, 7 grams of fiber, approximately 260 of polyphenols, and a low glycemic index of 15.

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