Summer 2020 is shaping up to look like no other in modern history—not to mention a less fun version of our favorite season.
One classic summer pastime that thankfully remains constant, however, is eating.
Everyone loves refreshing fruit and veggies during hot summer days and you should, because they’re bursting with micronutrients. These babies are believed to help maintain overall good health, in turn helping to minimize vulnerability to infection.
While there’s no food that guarantees your safety against any virus, nutritional scientists generally agree that eating a diet high in micronutrients helps you stay in good health. Here are seven recipes featuring all-star summer produce so you can be sure you get your daily dose of delicious nutrients you will love eating all season.
To many, the arrival of cherries in fruit stands signals the beginning of summer. Not only do these versatile little stone fruits taste great sweet or tart, but they also have high levels of quercetin—which regulate the immune system’s response to outside stressors through cell signaling pathways. If you’re looking for a new way to enjoy them besides straight off the stem, try out this simple cherry chutney recipe perfect for topping oatmeal, chicken, pork, ice cream, and just about everything else.
Fava Bean Salad
Summer is an ideal time to use your hoarded away fava beans in lighter recipes that help them shine. They’re an excellent source of iron, necessary for the production of enzymes that fight off infections. Recreate this easy salad that dresses up the bean with peas, fresh mint, and more.
Sure, oysters are available in many places year-round, but summer is the peak season for raw oyster slurping. The bivalves are packed with zinc, a mineral that protects against cellular damage from free radicals and hence, against infection. Here’s a video on how to safely shuck different types of oysters so you can still enjoy this classic and healthy summer seafood staple.
Summer is the best time to throw these milder cousins of onions into just about anything! They’re high in immune-boosting antioxidants and even have antibacterial properties. Here’s a good quick pasta recipe with shallots, roasted squash, spinach, and ricotta cheese.
Sweet, ripe tomatoes are one of the very best things about summertime. Cherry, grape, beefsteak, heirloom—all varieties are high in vitamins A and C, which both support immune system health. Whip up a special savory cobbler of tomatoes topped with ricotta biscuits and enjoy.
Ripe watermelon contains a large amount of the antioxidant glutathione, which also helps to strengthen important cellular components against damage, just like zinc. Here’s an easy salad that combines chunks of watermelon with olives, red onions, and feta cheese for a sweet-and-salty fresh dish you can enjoy for both breakfast and dinner.
Just one cup of zucchini contains about 40 percent of your daily recommended dose of immune system-boosting vitamin C. They’re a summer garden staple and are available in abundance from local growers to mega-sized grocers. Make a great all-day zucchini frittata as this should help the squash retain some of its crisp freshness and more of its nutritional benefits.