Roasted Root Veggie Salad (for fertility and hormone balance)
Why this recipe rocks: This is a great salad that promotes hormone balance and optimizes your fertility because it's packed with nutrient-dense foods that support your hormones and boost your egg quality!
Brussels sprouts- these are one of the most nutrient dense foods out there and they're brimming with vitamins and antioxidants that reduce inflammation, protect your eggs from oxidative stress, and promote blood sugar balance that helps balance your hormones. They're super high in Vitamin K and Vitamin C, as well as folate, and they're a good source of ALA omega 3 fatty acids.
Beets- these veggies do much more than add a pop of color to the salad- they're high in fiber to promote good digestion, full of folate, and some studies have shown that beetroot juice is particularly helpful in thickening the uterine lining to help with implantation and reducing risk of miscarriage.
Butternut squash- This veggie packs in one of the highest sources of vitamin A, as well as containing large amounts of vitamins C, E, B1, B3, B6, B9 (folate), magnesium, potassium, and manganese! Many of those vitamins are antioxidants that help fight inflammation, and the other nutrients help support overall brain, blood, bone, immune and hormonal health. Butternut squash is also a great source of complex carbohydrates, which give us energy in a slow, sustainable way as opposed to quickly spiking our blood sugar and making it crash down later.
Pumpkin Seeds- full of proteins, healthy fats, fiber, zinc and magnesium. They've been shown to boost sperm quality as well as promote female fertility and help regulate your hormones!
Sunflower Seeds- also full of protein and healthy fats, and support estrogen detoxification. Many of us are overexposed to synthetic estrogens through our exposure to toxic chemicals, which can throw our entire endocrine system off balance. Eating more seeds such as pumpkin, sunflower, and flax help detox this extra estrogen.
Tahini- high in protein and healthy fats to promote healthy blood sugar balance and keep you full
Apple cider vinegar- amazing ingredient to help stabilize blood sugar, full of probiotics that support a healthy gut microbiome.
(Makes 2-3 servings)
½ cup beets, roasted and cut into cubes
½ cup Brussels sprouts, roasted and cut in half (I used frozen but you can definitely use fresh)
½ cup butternut squash, roasted and cut into cubes
2 cups lettuce- I used something called “Lilak lettuce,” which is quite common here in Israel. I believe it’s the same thing as “green crystal lettuce” in the U.S., although it seems less common there. You can also use romaine, iceberg, or butter lettuce if that’s more easily available to you.
⅛ cup pumpkin seeds
⅛ cup sunflower seeds
½ cup pure tahini paste
¼ cup water, plus more to thin until desired consistency
4 tbsp apple cider vinegar
½ tsp sea salt
½ tsp garlic powder
½ tsp thyme, optional
¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
To prepare the roasted veggies:
Preheat your oven to 375°F, 190°C
Take your raw beet and drizzle it with a bit of olive oil, salt, and pepper. Wrap it in tinfoil and place it on a baking tray with parchment paper.
Add a small cut of butternut squash (if I had to guess mine was 6 x 4 inches) to the tray and drizzle with olive oil, salt, and cinnamon if you’d like.
On a separate baking tray, add brussels sprouts and drizzle with olive oil, salt, and pepper.
You can bake all the veggies at the same time, but the brussels sprouts will probably be done first. Depends how crispy you like everything. Check on them after 30 minutes. Bake the beet and squash for about 50 minutes.
Remove from oven and let cool completely.
Prepare the dressing:
Mix all dressing ingredients in a jar with a tightly fitted lid.
Shake to combine.
Add water to thin until you reach desired consistency. Store in fridge.
Assemble the salad:
In a large bowl, add the lettuce, beets, squash, brussels sprouts, pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds.
Drizzle with dressing.