No time to eat well? Think again! The shredded root salad
What gets in your way of eating more healthfully? If your answer is “not enough time” then I’ve got news for you. You DO have time, it just may not be right when you’re hungry! A little foresight into your week and a reallocation of prep time could be just the solution you need.
Let’s face it, we are all busy, we’re often hungry (especially when we’ve just worked out, or finished a long day at work), and we therefore go for the option that is quick, easy and in front of us. I coach clients to anticipate those instances when they’re going to be pressed for time and look for blocks in their calendar to prepare in advance some healthy options to have available.
Having vegetables already chopped (or in this case shredded) and ready to be inserted into raw or cooked dishes is one way that I am able to eat in a way that provides energy and makes me feel good about my choices, even when I don’t have time.
Three of my favorite veggies to work with are daikon raddish, carrots and beets. I love their vibrant colors, and the fact that they all are low in calories and high in fiber while they each contribute different nutrients that we need to maintain good health. The daikon soars in it’s vitamin C, the carrot in vitamin A and the beet contains various nutrients that help to fight inflammation. Together they help slow down aging, help promote healthy skin and nails and have been shown to improve respiratory health, just to name a few of the benefits.
These veggies are simple to prepare and easy to store until needed. I use my food processor with the shredding disc. Start with the radish, then shred the carrot and save the beet for last. This way you don’t have to wash out the bowl of the processor in between
There are other reasons I often pick these particular vegetables. I know they will hold up well if stored properly in the fridge and they are so versatile. Sometimes I will add a handful of one or all three into a pan with olive oil and garlic and sprinkle with salt and pepper before serving as a side dish or throwing into an omelet or combining with some leftover grains. Other times I may throw them on top of spinach for a colorful salad. I’ve even thrown them into vegetable broth to quickly make soup. Used together or separately, the options are endless.
I recently walked in from the gym starving, which is nothing new, and I was craving a big salad, yet I knew I was past due for a trip to the grocery and that my fridge was pretty bare. No lettuce, no greens, no cabbage or peppers or much else to work with. I was frustrated because I was craving healthy food and knew that is what would really nourish me, and yet I was so hungry that I would have eaten anything that I could get my hands on and into my mouth quickly. Then I saw the glass dish with the trio of carrots, beets and radishes. With nothing to go with them, I tossed the shredded veggies with a honey mustard dressing that I whipped up in 2 minutes and discovered that my “go to” trio was an amazing stand alone salad. I couldn’t believe it was that simple and that delicious! After a few bites, I grabbed a few almonds from the pantry and chopped them to sprinkle on top and I knew that I would be satisfied long enough to make it through the rest of my morning, until I had time to food shop. More importantly, I had discovered a salad that I would make often, even when there were other options!
Enjoy this salad, and I hope that you are inspired to make a few shifts in your schedule to find time to prepare nourishing wholesome food to have ready for when you need it. I try to shred some roots on Sunday to have on hand for my week ahead. The most important thing is to find a time that works well for you!! What else can you prepare when you do have time to use when you don’t? If you take “I don’t have time” off the excuse list, what else continues to get in your way of eating the way you know will help you look and feel your best?