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Winter has a lot going for it, but fresh produce is usually not on that list. In colder climates, eating locally through the winter can be downright challenging. But we’re here with some good news. With a bit of advanced planning and creativity, it’s possible to eat fresh vegetables with plenty of nutrients and flavor all winter long.

Cabbage:

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This super-healthy, budget-friendly vegetable is a close cousin to other cold-weather favorites like cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, kale, and broccoli . Cabbage is loaded with vitamins and minerals (Vitamins C and K and folate, in particular), fiber, antioxidants, and anti-carcinogenic compounds called glucosinolates. Some studies claim that the spherical vegetable can even reduce cholesterol and lower risk of cancer and diabetes

Brussels sprouts:

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These trendy sprouts are finally getting their turn in the spotlight. The Brussels sprout, aka cabbage’s mini-me, boasts some of the same health benefits as its big bro. Like other cruciferous veggies, Brussels sprouts have high levels of cancer-fighting antioxidants that can protect DNA from oxidative damage.

Winter Squash:

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Get ready to taste the gourdy goodness! Acorn, butternut, kabocha, and delicata squash are all at their prime during the fall and winter. Golden squash flesh is loaded with healthy goodness like carotenoids, Vitamin A, and potassium

Potatoes:

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Sure, potatoes are starchy and high on the glycemic index, but they’re also filling, inexpensive, and boast an impressive nutritional profile including potassium, magnesium, folic acid, vitamin C, and even protein. Fancy purple taters may even help lower blood pressure and boost antioxidants. While sweet potatoes are considered a healthier choice (since they’re loaded with beta-carotene, vitamins A and C, and fiber), regular old white spuds are still nutritious as long as you don’t fry ‘em or mash them with tons of butter and cream.

Carrots:

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Vitamin A is essential for a strong immune system and healthy eyes, skin, and mucus membranes. The orange veggies are also loaded with vitamin C, cyanidins, and lutein, which are all antioxidants. Some studies show that eating carrots can reduce risk of cancer and even prevent cardiovascular disease

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