This Delicious Superfood is a Blue Zones Longevity Staple
Harvest season is a time to celebrate bountiful crops, months of hard work, and the blessings of family. Delicious, hearty, and versatile, squash is a superfood popular in original blue zones areas. Whether it’s roasted as a side, pureed in a soup, or baked into a veggie roast, it deserves a spot at your dinner table.
Squash in Blue Zones Regions
Kabocha squash, or Japanese pumpkin, is popular in Okinawan cooking and is a good source of vitamins and toxin-removing fiber. All kinds of squash are grown and enjoyed in Ikaria, Greece, including butter squash and pumpkin-type squash. In the Nicoya region of Costa Rica, squash (often ayote or calabaza, similar to hard-shelled squash related to pumpkins or winter squash such as butternut, hubbard, or spaghetti squash) is a staple food that is often referred to as one of the “three sisters.”
Three Sisters of Squash, Beans, and Corn
In Mesoamerican agriculture, the “three sisters” of squash, beans, and corn are grown together, eaten together, and celebrated together. They provide a symbiotic growing relationship, as well as a complete nutritional profile. Corn provides carbohydrates, beans are rich in protein and fiber, and squash yields both vitamins and healthy fats from its seeds.
Like sweet potato and carrots, squash is high in beta-carotene and vitamin A, which can reduce the risk of certain cancers.
Load up on this fiber-filled food this fall or pair it with corn and beans all year round!