Something that I enjoy doing is going to my local farmers' market. There are tons of reasons why (like it's good for the environment, a great way to support local farmers and the prices are unmatched), yet one of the main ones is because of how fresh the produce seems to be; especially during the spring and autumn seasons. Well, since spring is upon us (can you believe it?), I thought that now would be just a good of a time as any to share some of the fruits and veggies that are in season during this time of the year.
Specific foods that you should definitely cop because they will be more delicious and filled with more nutrients than any other time which is why eating things when they are in season (whether they are in the store when they are out of season or not) really is the way to go. Are you ready to pull out your grocery list and jot a few of these down? Let's do it.
1. Cherries are in season from May to August.
Without a doubt, one of my favorite fruits is cherries. Well, cherries when they're in season because otherwise, they taste too watery or they feel too mushy. Anyway, as far as health benefits go, cherries are good for you because they contain a good amount of protein, fiber, Vitamin C, and potassium. They are also rich in antioxidants as well as have anti-inflammatory properties in them. Not only that, but if you're looking for a fruit that will keep your heart healthy, improve arthritis-related symptoms and fight free radicals that can lead to aging, cherries will have your back in this area too.
Something else that's cool about cherries is, that since they have melatonin in them, they are a low-calorie snack that you can enjoy before turning in at night. Also, since they've got the plant compound phytoestrogens in them, cherries are great for menopausal women if you're looking for a natural way to heighten the estrogen levels in your system.
Try This: Northwest Cherry Salsa Recipe
2. Carrots are in season from May to sometimes December.
Whenever I know I'm low in fiber and I want something light to snack on, I'll get some bite-sized carrots. Fiber aside, carrots also have Vitamin B6 and K, potassium, biotin, and beta-carotene (an antioxidant that your body converts to Vitamin A). Some awesome things about the health benefits of carrots are they do everything from lower your cholesterol levels and support your eye health to help to keep your skin glowing as they boost your immunity.
Try This: Sauteed Carrots Recipe
3. Mangoes are in season from May to September.
Stringiness aside, hands down, one of my favorite fruits is mangoes. And yes, I can definitely tell the difference between what one is like when I have it in season and when I attempt to eat one out of season (the latter? Please avoid it at all costs). It's kind of crazy how something so sweet can be filled with so many different nutrients yet mangoes are a really good source of fiber, protein, Vitamin C, copper, and folate. Mangoes also have vitamins A, B5, E, K, potassium, manganese, and magnesium in them.
Thanks to their antioxidants, this is another food that is great for your immune system. The Vitamin C in them will help you to produce collagen which gives your hair and skin more "bounce" and youthfulness. Since mangoes contain prebiotic fiber, they're good for your gut health and, if you happen to be diabetic, this fruit is one you can enjoy without any fear or guilt because its average glycemic index is somewhere around 51. 51 and lower is a glycemic food that diabetics are typically able to eat.
Try This: Thai Mango Salad Recipe
4. Scallions are in season from late March to August.
Scallions are a vegetable that comes from the allium (onions, garlic, shallot, leeks, chives) family. If you've never had them before, they basically taste like onions except much milder. Scallions contain protein, plant fiber, folate, and vitamins A, B, C, and E. If you're looking for the kind of food that will strengthen your heart, improve your bone health, lessen period discomfort and even hinder the growth of cancer cells, look no further than this veggie. And when are scallions in season? From late March to August but it is at its peak during the spring season.
Try This: Chinese Scallion Pancake Recipe
5. Pineapples are in season from March to July.
When it comes to Vitamin C's RDI (recommended dietary intake) in pineapples, it really is off the charts. You can get a whopping 131 percent with each serving. Pineapples also have 76 percent of the manganese that your system needs along with fiber, protein, and respectable amounts of Vitamin B, folate, potassium, and magnesium. The antioxidants in pineapples have a great reputation for reducing oxidative stress. Their digestive enzymes can make digesting food a lot easier on your body.
Believe it or not, pineapples can fight bodily inflammation (including arthritis thanks to the protein-digesting enzyme bromelain that's in it) and they're an immune-boosting fruit that totally has your back if you're looking for something delicious that can actually help you to lose weight.
Try This: Grill-Roasted Pineapple Recipe
6. Artichokes are in season from March to May.
I'm assuming that the way most of us are familiar with artichokes is spinach and artichoke dip. Well, every time you indulge in some, you're taking in a ton of fiber and protein, for starters. Artichokes are also a veggie that has vitamins C and K, folate, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, and iron in them. If you're looking for food that will help to lower your cholesterol levels while also helping to regulate your blood pressure, artichokes can totally make that happen.
Something else that's great about this vegetable is the antioxidants cynarin and silymarin are beneficial in boosting the health of your liver (which is always a good thing). If you've got IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), artichokes can bring you some relief. They also contain cancer-fighting properties and the folate that's in them can reduce the inflammation that is associated with allergies.
Try This: Roasted Artichokes Recipe
7. Apricots are in season from May to July.
Did you know that the other name for apricots is Armenian plums? They're a fruit that is smaller than a peach and tastes a lot like a plum. Anyway, vitamins A, C, and E, as well as potassium, calcium, beta carotene, fiber, and protein are what apricots are a pretty good source of. If you want a type of food that will protect your skin from damaging sun rays, will promote good gut health, has non-heme iron in it (iron that comes from plant-based foods), strengthens bones, and boosts your metabolism, bite into an apricot. You won't regret it.
Try This: Apricot Lemon Iced Tea Recipe
8. Peas are in season in April.
Peas and rice are bomb. And while a lot of us tend to get peas from a can, they do taste different when they are fresh, in season, and still in the pod (via your produce section). And when are peas in season? During the spring, and in April to be exact. What makes peas amazing is that they are a good source of zinc, protein, fiber, vitamins A, B, C, and E as well as antioxidants, iron, and phytonutrients (plant chemical compounds). They're great for your health because the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin are good for your eyes, plus they help to regulate blood sugar levels. Not only that but the nutrient coumestrol can protect you from getting stomach cancer and, if you're looking to increase your man's sperm motility, peas are down for doing that too (if they're snow peas, that is).
Try This: Green Pea Dip Recipe
9. Strawberries are in season from April to June.
I'm gonna be honest. Something that irks the mess outta me is seeing strawberries in the produce section year-round. I don't care if the national strawberry season is supposedly every month but December or not, I'm rocking with the deep south farmers who say strawberries are in season from the spring through the summer (you can definitely taste the difference—big time!).
One reason why I think it's fitting that strawberries are at their best during the warmer months is that they contain 91 percent water, so they can definitely keep you well-hydrated. This is a fruit that also has fiber, antioxidants, manganese, folate, and potassium in them. Snack on some if you want to protect yourself from heart disease, regulate your blood sugar, boost your immunity, improve your vision, reduce inflammation, strengthen your immunity or keep the elastin in your skin longer.
Try This: Ricotta and Strawberry Toast Recipe
10. Dandelion greens are in season from March to June.
While virtually all dark leafy greens are good for you, various ones are at their best during different times of the year. Take dandelion greens, for example. Spring is when you can get the most potent combination of its vitamins A, B, C, E, and K, along with iron, calcium, fiber, magnesium, and antioxidants. The bioactive compounds in these kinds of greens will help to reduce bodily inflammation, its chicoric and chlorogenic acids will help to keep your blood sugar levels under control, plus dandelion greens contain other properties that help to reduce cholesterol levels, lower your blood pressure, keep your liver healthy, support healthy digestion, keep you regular and protect your skin from sun damage. So, if you want to try a different kind of greens than spinach, kale, or collards, consider dandelion. It will literally do your body good.
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Different puzzle pieces are creating bigger pictures these days. 2024 will mark a milestone on a few different levels, including the release of my third book next June (yay!).
I am also a Professional Certified Coach. My main mission for attaining that particular goal is to use my formal credentials to help people navigate through the sometimes tumultuous waters, both on and offline, when it comes to information about marriage, sex and relationships that is oftentimes misinformation (because "coach" is a word that gets thrown around a lot, oftentimes quite poorly).
I am also still super devoted to helping to bring life into this world as a doula, marriage life coaching will always be my first love (next to writing, of course), a platform that advocates for good Black men is currently in the works and my keystrokes continue to be devoted to HEALTHY over HAPPY in the areas of holistic intimacy, spiritual evolution, purpose manifestation and self-love...because maturity teaches that it's impossible to be happy all of the time when it comes to reaching goals yet healthy is a choice that can be made on a daily basis (amen?).
If you have any PERSONAL QUESTIONS (please do not contact me with any story pitches; that is an *editorial* need), feel free to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org. A sistah will certainly do what she can. ;)
This article is in partnership with Sensodyne.
Our teeth are connected to so many things - our nutrition, our confidence, and our overall mood. We often take for granted how important healthy teeth are, until issues like tooth sensitivity or gum recession come to remind us. Like most things related to our bodies, prevention is the best medicine. Here are five things you can do immediately to improve your oral hygiene, prevent tooth sensitivity, and avoid dental issues down the road.
1) Go Easy On the Rough Brushing: Brushing your teeth is and always will be priority number one in the oral hygiene department. No surprises there! However, there is such a thing as applying too much pressure when brushing…and that can lead to problems over time. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and brush in smooth, circular motions. It may seem counterintuitive, but a gentle approach to brushing is the most effective way to clean those pearly whites without wearing away enamel and exposing sensitive areas of the teeth.
2) Use A Desensitizing Toothpaste: As everyone knows, mouth pain can be highly uncomfortable; but tooth sensitivity is a whole different beast. Hot weather favorites like ice cream and popsicles have the ability to trigger tooth sensitivity, which might make you want to stay away from icy foods altogether. But as always, prevention is the best medicine here. Switching to a toothpaste like Sensodyne’s Sensitivity & Gum toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth will help build a protective layer over sensitive areas of the tooth. Over time, those sharp sensations that occur with extremely cold foods will subside, and you’ll be back to treating yourself to your icy faves like this one!
3) Floss, Rinse, Brush. (And In That Order!): Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s not what you do, but how you do it”? Well, the same thing applies to taking care of your teeth. Even if you are flossing and brushing religiously, you could be missing out on some of the benefits simply because you aren’t doing so in the right order. Flossing is best to do before brushing because it removes food particles and plaque from places your toothbrush can’t reach. After a proper flossing sesh, it is important to rinse out your mouth with water after. Finally, you can whip out your toothbrush and get to brushing. Though many of us commonly rinse with water after brushing to remove excess toothpaste, it may not be the best thing for our teeth. That’s because fluoride, the active ingredient in toothpaste that protects your enamel, works best when it gets to sit on the teeth and continue working its magic. Rinsing with water after brushing doesn’t let the toothpaste go to work like it really can. Changing up your order may take some getting used to, but over time, you’ll see the difference.
4) Stay Hydrated: Upping your water supply is a no-fail way to level up your health overall, and your teeth are no exception to this rule. Drinking water not only helps maintain a healthy pH balance in your mouth, but it also washes away residue and acids that can cause enamel erosion. It also helps you steer clear of dry mouth, which is a gateway to bad breath. And who needs that?
5) Show Your Gums Some Love: When it comes to improving your smile, you may be laser-focused on getting your teeth whiter, straighter, and overall healthier. Rightfully so, as these are all attributes of a megawatt smile; but you certainly don’t want to leave gum health out of the equation. If you neglect your gums, you’ll start to notice the effects of plaque buildup, which can irritate the gums and cause gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease. Seeing blood while brushing and flossing is a tell-tale sign that your gums are suffering. You may also experience gum recession — a condition where the gum tissue surrounding your teeth pulls back, exposing more of your tooth. Brushing at least twice a day with a gum-protecting toothpaste like Sensodyne Sensitivity and Gum, coupled with regular dentist visits, will keep your gums shining as bright as those pearly whites.
2023 has become the year of celebrity breakups with headlines breaking left and right about celebs filing for divorce or ending high-profile relationships. The latest couple to announce their dissolution? British actress Jodie Turner-Smith. TMZ reported that Jodie has filed for a divorce from her husband, Dawson Creek alum Joshua Jackson.
As far as her reason for calling it quits, Jodie cited "irreconcilable differences," according to TMZ, and has requested joint custody of the couple's daughter, Juno Rose Diana Jackson. Late last year there were rumblings of there being "trouble in paradise" for the couple after the media realized they were no longer following each other on Instagram.
Those rumors were more than laid to rest when Jodie and Joshua went to the 2023 Oscars together earlier this year, and even more recently, when they celebrated her birthday together last month during the September unveiling of the Lotus Emeya.
Jodie Turner-Smith celebrates her birthday with husband Joshua Jackson at the unveiling of the new fully-electric Lotus Emeya on September 07, 2023 in New York City.
Brian Ach/Getty Images for Lotus
Despite seeming particularly happy and in love, perhaps the writing was already written on the wall even then. In the past, Jodie has been very celebratory publicly about her love for her estranged husband, even boldly recounting their love story for the books in a 2021 interview with Seth Meyers.
When Jodie and Joshua met, it was while at his birthday party in 2018. Their relationship was hot and heavy from the start, with Jodie openly noting that they began as a "one-night stand." During her 2021 interview with Seth Meyers, she jokingly referred to their love story as a "three-year one-night stand." She shared:
"First of all, I saw him before he saw me and when I saw him, I was like, 'I want that.' And then when he saw me, I just pretended like I didn't see him. He had to yell across the room to me, and I was wearing this T-shirt from a movie called Sorry to Bother You and [actress] Tessa Thompson plays a character called Detroit, and she has this T-shirt that says, 'The Future Is Female Ejaculation.'
"And so, he shouts across the room, 'Detroit!' He comes over and… does this really cute, charming thing that he does and just all night -- he just basically followed me around the party."
The couple were together from that moment forth, and even made things "Instagram official" less than two weeks later while on a dinner date. Joshua would later clarify to Insider that the night they met in 2018 was not a 'one-night stand' or a 'three-year one-night stand' like his then-wife joked but instead, it was "technically a three-night stand."
"It was sealed with a kiss that night and then we didn't leave each other's sides for, well, three years now," Joshua continued at the time.
In a July 2021 interview with Jimmy Fallon, Joshua dropped more details about the why behind getting married. He revealed that he didn't know he wanted to get married to Jodie until "the moment she asked me."
"She asked me on New Year's Eve. We were in Nicaragua. It was very beautiful, incredibly romantic, we were walking down the beach and she asked me to marry her."
He added, "I did not know [she would propose], but she was quite adamant and she was right. This is the best choice I ever made."
Joshua Jackson Reveals Jodie Turner-Smith Proposed To Him
Jodie received quite a bit of flack for proposing to Joshua because it goes against tradition and what society sees as acceptable for a woman to do to a man, and proposing isn't one of them. No matter how much time has passed, the viewpoints around who should do the proposing and who should be proposed to are still very traditional.
After being on the receiving end of such backlash, Joshua would later clarify to the media in a separate interview that it wasn't just Jodie's proposal to him that sealed the deal of them getting married, he proposed to her too. She might have initiated it, but Joshua followed through.
"I accidentally threw my wife under the bus because that story was told quickly and it didn't give the full context and holy Jesus, the internet is racist and misogynist," he explained to Refinery29 that same year. "We were in Nicaragua on a beautiful moonlit night, it could not possibly have been more romantic."
David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images
He continued, "And yes, my wife did propose to me and yes, I did say yes, but what I didn't say in that interview was there was a caveat, which is that I'm still old school enough that I said, 'This is a yes, but you have to give me the opportunity [to do it too].'"
"She has a biological father and a stepdad, who's the man who raised her. [I said], 'You have to give me the opportunity to ask both of those men for your hand in marriage.' And then, 'I would like the opportunity to re-propose to you and do it the old-fashioned way down on bended knee.' So, that's actually how the story ended up."
Joshua and Jodie would eventually marry in December 2019. Shortly thereafter, Jodie gave birth to the couple's first child, Janie, in 2020.
In a recent interview with Elle UK, Jodie shared the ways becoming a mother to Juno helped to heal her of her wounds from colorism she experienced in the past. "It's interesting because I had a lot of resistance to becoming a mother and, throughout my life, I always said if I were to have children, I wanted to have Black, Black babies so that I could affirm them as children with the love that I felt I needed to have been affirmed with by the outside world," Jodie shared with the outlet.
She continued, "Then I fell in love with my husband and we talked about having kids. I did have this mini pause, where I was like, 'She's going to be walking through the world not only having an experience that I did not have, but looking like people that, in a way, I'd always felt a little bit tormented by.' Now that I've got this little, tiny, light-skinned boss, I feel like it’s the universe teaching me lessons. I've been given a daughter who looks this way to heal my own conversations around colorism."
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