Thursday, October 7, 2010
So whaddya know about squash?
Squash is low fat and offers an ample doese of dietary fiber, which makes it a heart and diet-friendly food. in addition to being vibrant and flavorful, squash packs a mean vitamin punch!
Squash is a wonderful source for vital vitamins and nutrients like potassium (important for bone health) vitamin B6 (essential for the proper functioning of both the nervous and immune systems) and folate (an important nutrient in the prevention of birth defects).
Squash is also a great source of vitamin A, a very good source of vitamin C, manganese, omega-3 fatty acids, thiamin, copper, vitamin B5 and niacin.
One of the most abundant nutrients in squash is beta carotene - an important antioxidant with anti-inflammatory properties that has been shown to help prevent the oxidation of cholesterol in the body.
WHEN BUYING SQUASH: Choose squash that are firm and fairly heavy for their size, otherwise they may be dry and cottony inside. Look for squash that hve bright, glossy exteriors, and avoid buying squash taht have nicks or bruises on their skins, as well as ones that have soft spots.
WHEN STORING SQUASH: Different kinds of squash store for different lengths of time. For instance, acorn squash may be stored for 2 weeks in a refrigerator, and up to four days one it has been cut open. Butternut squash and pumpkins may be sotred for up to 2-3 months. Also, avoid storing squash near apples, avocados or passionfruit, as they are known ripening agents that release ethylene gas.
For more infomation about the health benefits of squash, please contact our Moveable Market team and be sure to stop by one of their sites. Take a peek at their October schedule to find out when they'll be in your neck of the woods! http://www.foodbankyc.org/moveablemarket.htm
And be sure to check out our Myspace blog every Friday during the month of October for delicious, innovative recipes featuring squash! http://www.myspace.com/yolofoodbank/blog