Welcome! If you’re just joining us, you have arrived in the middle of a blog series on improving and maintaining your health during the fall and winter. We’ve already covered some ideas for staying active in colder weather, both indoors and outdoors, as well as recipes for winter squashStay tuned for more delicious seasonal recipes and ways to protect your mental and emotional health as the days get shorter.

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and everywhere you look, comfort foods will start to threaten your best intentions. Before you give up on being able to have the things you love, we’d like to suggest redefining comfort food to mean flavorful and satisfying, rather than fattening.

One category of vegetables that usually gets a bad rap is the cruciferous variety. Broccoli might be the least disliked of them all, but along with its cousins kale, cabbage, cauliflower, and brussels sprouts, at best it’s usually tolerated; allowed to stay in rotation because of its health benefits, which are many. A great source of Vitamin A and C, folic acid, and cancer-fighting compounds, cruciferous vegetables should have a regular spot on our tables. Unfortunately, their often-strong flavors are a barrier for a lot of us. However, it’s possible that the fault doesn’t lie with the veggies themselves, but rather the way they are usually prepared.

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If you have hated brussels sprouts since the age of 6, there’s a good chance nothing will change your mind about them. But if you give these recipes (and others you can easily find online) another try, we think you might be pleasantly surprised to find they aren’t only tolerable, but downright delicious. You might even want to make room for them on your Thanksgiving or Christmas table! Here are a few ideas that caught our eye:

Collard Greens, Cornmeal, and Sausage Soup 

Roasted Cabbage Wedges with Onion Dijon Sauce

Sweet and Spicy Baked Cauliflower 

Crispy Broccoli Parmesan Fritters 

Nutty Baby Kale Chips 

Brussels Sprouts with Cranberries and Pecans 

We hope you'll find at least one new way to enjoy these veggies this season.

Later blog posts in this series include: recipes for baked goods, soups & stews, and roasted foods, and leveraging light and sleep for mental health.

Making your health a priority takes a multi-faceted approach. Diet, activity level, stress management, and rest all play a part. It’s also wise to have a plan for paying for healthcare when you need it. Liberty HealthShare is a community of people who have committed to share in one another’s medical costs while pursuing a healthy lifestyle. Membership is one more way you can take charge of your health. Visit our homepage for more information, and feel free to call (855) 58-LIBERTY to speak to a representative.