Health-conscious people do not generally embrace winter weather—it's hard to stay fit during dark days with holiday gorging and the constant temptation to hibernate. A lack of great produce doesn't help, but there actually are some fruits and veggies that reach their prime this time of year, and they could very well give the season a good name again. Sub them in for your favorite summer superfoods, and before you know it, you'll be pining away for next winter.
If You Like: Green Beans
Rethink your greens. This underused veggie contains more than your recommended daily dose of vitamins A and K, antioxidant compounds that strengthen your immune system and help ward off winter colds. Plus, one serving contains 7.6 grams of fiber, which, according to the Department of Agriculture, can lower your body's absorption of calories from carbs. The best part, though? All those nutrients will set you back a mere 46 calories. Shop for collards with dark-green leaves and zero yellowing.
If You Like:Summer (Yellow) Squash
Okay, so the names here are a giveaway, but acorn, butternut, spaghetti, and turban squashes are all perfectly healthy substitutes. They're rich in vitamins A and C, as well as iron and riboflavin (a.k.a. B2), which can help perk up your mood on particularly dreary days. Look for the deepest-colored picks, as they typically pack the most health-boosting phytochemicals.
If You Like: Berries
Pomegranates have more free-radical fighters than berries—and red wine and green tea, for that matter. Plus, their unique blend of compounds has been shown to speed up skin-cell turnover and boost collagen production for a younger-looking you. Not sure how to get into the damn thing? Cut it in half, plop it in a deep bowl of water, and work the seeds out with your hands.
If You Like: Peaches
Sweeter than peaches and just as healthy (if not more), these tennis-ball-size fruits pack about 55 percent of your recommended daily vitamin A intake, 21 percent of vitamin C, 25 percent of fiber, and 30 percent of manganese, which you need to keep your metabolism in working order. Steer clear of super-soft ones, though. Persimmons are already pretty mushy, so when they're soft on the outside, they're plain gross on the inside.
If You Like: Oranges
In one Journal of Medicinal Food study, obese patients who ate half a fresh grapefruit three times a day before each meal lost almost four pounds and improved their insulin resistance after 12 weeks. Researchers aren't exactly sure why yet, but who cares? Go ahead and eat up. FYI, with grapefruit, the firmer, the better.
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