If you need calcium but want to skip the dairy, these greens will do the trick. Some of us love our coffee creamers (more like chemicals), cheese, and yogurt, but did you know that dairy causes excess mucus? This eventually will build up in the intestines and harden. This will create digestive issues and lead to more problems in the long run. If you would like to get calcium from other foods try kale, spinach, dandelion, and collard greens. Other foods you can try are rhubarb, black-eyed peas, and sardines just to name a few.

Here are some healthy recipes that you can try.

Kale and Cherry Salad

1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic

(or 2 teaspoons minced red/white bottoms of summer garlic)

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed (not bottled) lime juice

1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil

Several grinds of black pepper

6 cups loosely packed kale leaves

1/4 cup sweet cherries, cut roughly in quarters

1⁄4 cup unsweetened coconut, either shredded or chips

Directions:

In a small glass or metal bowl, whisk together with a fork. Set dressing aside while preparing kale. Strip stems from leaves and reserve stems for another use. Tear or cut leaves roughly into 2” squares, then wash in a salad spinner and spin dry. Into a large serving bowl, place 6 cups loosely packed kale leaves Toss with reserved dressing. Over the top of salad, sprinkle the cherries and coconut. Allow salad to sit for 15 to 20 minutes before serving, so marinade can tenderize kale. (vegkitchen.com)

 

Dandelion Greens – One cup cooked has 147 mg calcium. Other nutrients include fiber, potassium, and vitamin A and B.

Recipe to try

Dandelion Greens with Currants and Pine Nuts

About 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

1 lb. dandelion greens, ends trimmed, roughly chopped (about 2½ qts.)

1/8 tsp. each kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

3 tbsp. each dried currants and toasted pine nuts

Lemon wedges (optional)

Directions:

1. Heat 1 tbsp. oil in a large nonstick frying pan over medium heat. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, stirring, about 30 seconds.

2. Add dandelion greens in batches, turning frequently with tongs. Increase heat to medium-high, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and continue to cook, turning with tongs, until greens are wilted and tender-crisp, about 5 minutes.

3. Add currants and pine nuts and cook 1 minute more. Transfer to a serving dish and drizzle with about 1 tbsp. more oil. Serve with a squeeze of lemon if you like.

Beet Greens 1 cup cooked has 165 mg calcium. Other nutrients include folate and vitamin A.

Recipe to try:

Classic Beet Green Dish

2 bunches beet greens, stems removed

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, or to taste

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional) salt to taste

2 lemons, quartered

 Directions

1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add the beet greens, and cook uncovered until tender, about 2 minutes. Drain in a colander, then immediately immerse in ice water for several minutes until cold to stop the cooking process. Once the greens are cold, drain well, and coarsely chop.

2. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Stir in the garlic and red pepper flakes; cook and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the greens until oil and garlic is evenly distributed. Season with salt and pepper. Cook just until greens are hot; serve with lemon wedges.

-Yvelette Stines