Stoep Su­per­stars

The plants be­low are packed with nu­tri­ents and easy to grow, as long as you po­si­tion them in the right spot

Women's Health (South Africa) - - BEST BODY -

Num-num berries

These glossy green bushes are ev­ery­where, par­tic­u­larly in KwaZulu-Natal, and they’re a pop­u­lar land­scap­ing plant used to cre­ate se­cu­rity hedges. GOOD FOR: The fruit, shaped like grapes, is high in vi­ta­min C, mag­ne­sium and phos­pho­rus – per­fect for fight­ing fa­tigue and boost­ing im­mu­nity. USE I T: Get cre­ative and make jam from the raw berries or chop them up and use to flavour teas, sal­ads or fruit sal­ads.

Sea­weed and kelp

When they’re not wrapped around your legs in the ocean, they’re down­right del­ish. GOOD FOR: Touted as a su­per­food, the ocean veg­gies are rich in cop­per, cal­cium, iron and io­dine – a key min­eral in thy­roid reg­u­la­tion. Over­ac­tive thy­roid? Best avoid. USE I T: in lit­er­ally ev­ery­thing. “You can eat the long leafy fronds or leaves as a veg­etable. You cook it pretty much like a pasta,” says Gray. “You can use it for teas, in soups, in stews, to flavour rice dishes... There are so many ways.”

Pig­weed

Although not na­tive to SA, you’ll find it along the road­side or in gar­dens, where it grows wild. The stems and leaves are fine to eat, but not the root. And eat spar­ingly (i.e. no more than 100g a day): too much has a neg­a­tive ef­fect and can give you a stom­ach ache. Look for Amaran­thus hy­bridus. GOOD FOR: It’s full of nu­tri­ents, such as carotene, vi­ta­mins A and C, iron and cal­cium. USE I T: Sim­ply sauté in a pan and serve as you would spinach or add to smooth­ies and juices.

Kei ap­ple

Named af­ter the Kei river in the Eastern Cape, this fruit grows wild in many parts of the coun­try. It turns yel­low when ripe and has a fuzzy coat, kind of like a peach, but with juicy flesh in­side, like an apri­cot. GOOD FOR: Your im­mune sys­tem, since it’s got a high con­cen­tra­tion of vi­ta­min C, amino acids and con­tains 15 dif­fer­ent an­tiox­i­dants. USE I T: The softer the fruit, the sweeter it is. Chop and use in sal­ads, iced tea, jams or desserts.

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