savor the season, spring into fresh produce, asparagus and green, leafy vegetables on a wooden table.

Savor the season: Eat healthier this spring with fresh produce

Looking for ways to eat healthier without breaking the bank this season? Consider these springtime produce options!


Asparagus is a dark green vegetable rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants while also low in calories and fat.

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Try sautéing it with lemon juice and olive oil until it’s soft and tender. Then serve with a bed of rice and your favorite protein, such as chicken or fish. And if you’re in the mood for a delicious salad, try this OSF recipe for Asparagus Caprese Salad!


Mushrooms are fungi packed with 12 different vitamins as well as antioxidants and fiber. They’re known for supporting a healthy immune system due to the selenium, zinc and vitamin B6 they contain.

  • Selenium helps your body make antioxidants, which play a key role in destroying harmful cells known as free radicals. Dietary research findings suggest that eating greater amounts of antioxidant-rich foods may help protect against certain diseases. Mushrooms high in selenium include shiitake mushrooms, portobello mushrooms and button mushrooms.
  • Zinc is a mineral that plays a role in healing damaged tissue and supporting a healthy immune system.
  • Vitamin B6 helps fight infection and promotes brain and nerve function. Shiitake mushrooms are the best choice for mushrooms high in this vitamin.

Check out this OSF recipe for Three-Pepper Beef Kabobs!

Swiss chard

Swiss chard is a nutrient-rich, dark, leafy green vegetable that is easy to prepare and has numerous health benefits, such as cancer prevention and heart health.

Hungry for Italian food? Try out this OSF recipe for Swiss Chard Rolls with Fresh Marinara.

“Asparagus, mushrooms and Swiss chard are just some of the seasonal produce options available across the United States in the springtime,” said Ashley Simper, a registered dietitian at OSF HealthCare. “Fresh seasonal produce not only tastes better, it also contains more nutrients than out-of-season options. Be sure to check out all the fresh fruits and vegetables available at the local supermarkets or farmers markets in your area.”

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About Author: Luke Legner

Luke Legner is a writing coordinator at OSF HealthCare. He joined the Ministry in April 2021 after several years working in corporate communications in the heavy equipment industry. A Pontiac native, he graduated from Illinois State University in 2002 where he earned a bachelor’s degree in mass communication.

Luke and his wife, Ashley, reside in Bloomington and have one son and two daughters. When he’s not tackling a home improvement project, you can usually find Luke watching his beloved Chicago Cubs or The Andy Griffith Show.

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