Why to pick up a parsnip.
Parsnips belong to the same plant family as celery, parsley and carrots, and are an excellent source of both soluble and insoluble dietary fibre (important for digestive health and the prevention of gastrointestinal disorders) parsnip’s high fibre content can aid with weight loss programmes or maintaining a healthy weight as it helps us feel full. It can even prevent the release of ghrelin (hunger hormone), so helping to fight off hunger pangs – how cool is that!
Parsnips are sweet and succulent and although higher in sugar content than carrots or turnips, they are packed with nutrients essential for health: phytonutrients, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, with all these compounds processing anti-cancer, anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory functions.
Pureed parsnips are a great substitute for sugar in savoury recipes, indeed they were used as a sweetening agent before sugar cane was introduced to Europe. Maximise health benefits of parsnips by steaming or roasting them with a drizzle of olive oil, rather than boiling. Keep the vitamin C concentration of parsnips high by using fresh parsnips within three to four days of purchase, and cut them just before cooking or eating.
Health Tip: don’t store parsnips in the fridge, as their sugar levels rise at low temperatures, which could increase acrylamide, a cooking carcinogen produced during cooking.
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