As a Certified Nutritionist, the most frequent recommendation I make to my clients who are on a weight loss diet is that they add vegetables to their meals.
According to the UDSA’s dietary guidelines, an adult consuming 2,000 calories per day should be eating 2 1/2 cups of vegetables per day. Yet the typical American eats only a single cup. Many of my clients eat far less than that.
If you’re not familiar with butternut squash, here’s why you should include it in your weight loss diet.
One cup of butternut squash provides a whopping 437% percent of your vitamin A needs for the day, as well as 52% of vitamin C and 10% or more of vitamin E, thiamin, niacin, vitamin B-6, folate, pantothenic acid, magnesium and manganese.
It also contains more potassium than a banana.
Many studies show that increasing consumption of foods like butternut squash decreases the risk of obesity, diabetes, and some forms of cancer.
Try this tasty, nutritious, and low calorie recipe. It will fit in perfectly with your weight loss diet.
Weight Loss Diet Recipe: Butternut Squash with Pumpkin Seeds & Cranberries
Ingredients (serves 4):
• 1 lb. butternut squash, cut into 1/2-inch dice
• 2 tsp. Dijon mustard
• 1 tsp. balsamic vinegar
• 2 Tbs. pomegranate juice or orange juice
• 1/8 tsp. kosher salt
• 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
• 1/3 cup pumpkin seeds, toasted
• 3 Tbs. dried cranberries
Note: You can also use half beets, half butternut squash.
1. Steam the squash until tender, 3-5 minutes. Drain any water.
2. In a large bowl, whisk together the mustard, vinegar, juice, salt, and oil.
3. Toss the squash in the bowl with the dressing.
4. Sprinkle with the pumpkin seeds and cranberries.
Nutrition (per ¾ cup serving):
Fat: 12 g
Protein: 4 g
Carbs: 19 g
Fiber: 3 g
Click here for this healthy squash recipe for a weight loss diet.