You’ll get more nutrients from vegetables if you eat them with healthy fats.
Some vitamins are water soluble and easily absorbed by your body. Others, including A, D, E, and K, are fat soluble. That means they only move from the intestines into your blood if they’re attached to dietary fat, explains Bethany Snodgrass, holistic health coach and operations manager at the Equinox Fitness Training Institute in New York City.
When found in animal products, like A in milk and D in salmon, these vitamins are already optimized for absorption since the foods are naturally fatty. But you’ll get more nutrients from vegetables—leafy greens, mushrooms, sweet potatoes, and carrots, to name a few—by prepping or pairing them with healthy fats.
Snodgrass suggests coating each serving of steamed vegetables in olive oil or sautéeing each serving in avocado, grapeseed, or coconut oil, which stand up well against high heat. (Use one teaspoon of oil per serving.) If you’re snacking on raw produce, eat each portion with one tablespoon of nuts or nut butters to get the full nutritional benefit, she adds.