This garden vegetables list is packed full of easy to grow vegetables to help you reach and maintain a healthy weight. Did you know you can grow your own weight-loss food? If you’ve tried to purchase good vegetables, then you know how expensive they are getting. Growing your own is easy to do in all kinds of spaces.
Spring is a fun time of the year and it’s almost time (depending on your growing zone) to make preparations for a successful gardening year. Planning the plot and starting seeds are all fun things that I enjoy.
If you need to shed a few of those stubborn winter pounds, why not grow a few plants from my garden vegetables list to help you on your way? All of these are easy vegetables to grow and with the right bit of exercise can really give you the edge you need to look and feel your best.
The first vegetable to come to mind when we think of weight loss is of course the tomato. It’s an intrinsic part of a salad or a BLT. In truth, it is a wonderful plant and is easy to grow. It is a fruit though and along with growing strawberries could be another topic all to itself. There are many articles written on how to care for tomato plants, so since everyone else is talking about it, I decided to focus on a few other options.
1) The Easy to Grow Cucumber
The cucumber is full of valuable water and minerals. I’m especially fond of it for smoothies and juicing. This plant is a mainstay in my garden as it can be used in salads, eaten by itself, soaked in vinegar, preserved as pickles and even grilled.
With any weight-loss diet, there’s a need to always have a diverse plate so not to lack any fiber or minerals. Cucumbers are very versatile and can be used in many different ways. I like to dehydrate them and then add them to my salads for a little something crunchy on it. Make sure to plant enough to be able to pickle, can and dehydrate as many as you need to last for months to come.
2) Celery the Low Calorie Champion
Like the cucumber, celery is mostly water and contains almost no calories. Your body will burn more calories while you’re eating it than the stick of celery has. Celery gives you a shot of fiber and protein as well. Just make sure if you add anything to a stick of celery you keep it healthy. Some people like to dip it in all kinds of creamy dips. We like to put a little bit of organic peanut butter on it. Yummy!
3) The Goodness of Broccoli
Did you know broccoli contains no fat and the carbs are slow release? The carbohydrates are great for keeping your energy levels up long after you eat it. This helps keep your body from feeling it’s being starved and going into the cycle of binge eating which is the downfall of most diet plans. Broccoli is another food most people smother in cheese or some other sauce.
4) Beans of Protein
Beans are a great choice to help your body keep its protein levels up. Keeping them up will stop the dreaded food cravings. They satisfy your body, especially when put on top of a steaming bowl of quinoa. Together they form a complete protein chain with most all the amino acids your body needs.
Beans are a companion plant to corn. We wait until our corn is knee high and then plant a variety of beans between the hills. The beans grow up the corn stalk and enrich the soil by fixing nitrogen which the corn has used. We usually plant at least 4 kinds of beans.
5) Spinach Superstar
One of my favorites to grow in containers. The nutritional content of spinach makes it a super food. It is low in calories and is also very high in vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients. You literally can’t eat too many calories when eating spinach. It’s an excellent source of vitamin K, A, C, B2, B6, magnesium, folate, manganese, iron, calcium, potassium and another great source of protein to boot. Then there’s the fiber, omega-3, copper and more!
Spinach can be grown almost anywhere in the world. It’s an easy to grow, versatile food which can be added to scrambled eggs, smoothies, juices and salads. It’s loaded with flavonoids which act as antioxidants which help protect against cancer. (Who doesn’t need more of those in today’s world?) I guess Popeye was on to something popping cans of spinach like candy!
It doesn’t stop there, it’s also a heart-healthy food and can help maintain a healthy gastrointestinal tract. It is said to help with arthritis, osteoporosis, migraines and asthma. Studies have shown it may slow age-related effects in brain function! I had dangerously low iron levels in 2005. I use spinach to boost my iron levels tremendously. Iron carries oxygen to your cells, which helps keep your energy levels high. Make sure you are using organic spinach as it’s one of the foods on the market today which is most highly sprayed with pesticides.
6) Bell Peppers the Taste Choice
Bell peppers are low in calories, one cup comes in around 40 calories a serving. They give you enough vitamins A and C to last you all day. They contain capsaicin which studies have shown reduces the bad cholesterol in the body.
They’re great at controlling my sweet tooth as they have a great sweetness all their own. I love to use them on many different dishes and they dehydrate very easily making them good for many years to come. If you’ve never had a dehydrated bell pepper, you’re missing out. The flavor becomes so sweet and rich, I add them to everything from salads to gumbo.
7) Squash the Gold Standard
We enjoy squash in soups, salads, raw, grilled and baked. We grow crook-neck yellow, butternut, zucchini, upper ground sweet potato, spaghetti, acorn squash, and my favorite, the pumpkin. With a broad range of flavors and applications to fill your plate, it’s always nice to try a new variety of squash. I warn you, if you don’t have enough room all plant all of them, choosing from these delicious heirloom varieties will be difficult.
Spaghetti squash is a substitute for almost any pasta. Butternut squash is delectable when cut in half and baked in the oven or diced and steamed. I like to add butter and cinnamon to mine for a special burst of flavor. A cup of yellow squash contains around 35 calories, 7 grams of carbs, 1 gram of protein and less than one gram of fat. Squash is a great choice when replacing higher calorie vegetables like potatoes and corn.
Preserving squash is easy too. Butternut, spaghetti, acorn, pumpkin and upper ground sweet potato are hardy winter keepers. I like to dehydrate zucchini and crook-neck for soups, salads and casseroles.
You’ll need a little more garden space for some of these. Upper ground sweet potato, for instance, spreads far and wide. I’ve seen photos of people growing zucchini and butternut vertically, but I’ve never done it myself.
8) Onions Make Things Better
Onions are a staple in our home. We eat them almost every day in some form or another. I like to add a couple of onion varieties to my guacamole dip at the same time. They give it an unexpected flavor explosion! They simply make things taste better.
Did you know onions have the lowest calorie profile on our garden vegetables list? They also contain a large amount of sulfur and are good for your liver health as well. They are a companion to protein-rich foods as they facilitate the actions of amino acids, helping the brain and nervous systems to function to their full potential.
Onions can help aid in detoxifying your body from heavy metals. The yellow and red onion varieties are the richest dietary source of quercitin, which has many health benefits including guarding against stomach cancer.
Of course, there’s so many on the garden vegetables list for weight-loss it would be hard to list them all. We could have talked about growing radishes, turnips, or kale. I went with the veggies that don’t get noticed all the time. I guess I’m for the underdog.
So there you have it, my garden vegetables list for weight-loss. Do you grow any of these? Do you have growing tips or suggestions for something not on our garden vegetables list? Please share with us in the comments below.
Safe and Happy Journey,
Rhonda and The Pack