Why It’s Important to Rotate Your Greens

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I write a lot about green smoothies and the benefits of drinking green smoothies on a regular basis. Similarly, I am also a huge advocate of juicing your greens.

But one of the important aspects of eating or drinking your greens is the rotation of plants. Let me explain why!

The Advantages of Rotating Greens

Strangely enough, rotating greens is much more essential than it is to regularly swap fruits. Let’s dive a little deeper into this.


When you consume the exact same variety of green leafy vegetables, your body is always getting the same nutrients. Each variety of plant will give you different nutrients, minerals, and antioxidants.

Nature’s System

But it goes even further than that. You see, each plant has a self-defense mechanism to keep animals from completely devastating their favorite plant.

For example, if monkeys loved spinach and decided to eat all the spinach around, then the plant could not procreate and it would die out.

Fresh kale

Nature’s system is so smart because it knows that it’s important to keep greens around. Hello! it’s the most nutritious food pound for pound! So green leafy plants actually have a minute amount of alkaloids, which act like a poison if ingested regularly.

That’s where rotating your greens comes in! If you switch between different types of green plans, your body’s immune system is actually getting a boost because it is working on different alkaloids all the time.

How Many Different Types of Greens to Rotate

My standard recommendation is to switch between at least 10-12 types of greens. You can have say two or three days on one green like spinach, and then two or three days on kale, then two or three days on gai lan, you get the picture.

This actually ties in well with the Traditional Chinese Medicine system of hot and cold foods. Some people do well on certain types of greens, while others are better off with different types.


Okay, so it’s super important to swap greens regularly. But what about fruits?

The reason we don’t need to focus on swapping fruit as much as greens is that fruits were designed to be eaten and spread by animals. Greens would rather grow, and have their seeds blow in the wind or be pollinated by insects.

Red and green apples

Long story short, greens are the most powerful healing foods out there, so it’s great to make them a staple part of your diet.

If you find it difficult to get enough greens in every day, check out my tips to sneak more vegetables into your diet. Hopefully you’ll find some helpful ideas there.

List of Greens to Get You Started

Your best bet is to go to a farmer’s market and look at the vast array of colorful greens. Pick some up, smell it, ask the farmer what it tastes like, and give it a try.

If you’ve got the space and inclination, I’d highly recommend you start a garden. Plant a few of these vegetables and see which ones you like. Over the years, I’ve tried every single green in the following long list.

  • Arugula (Rocket)
  • Basil Leaves
  • Beet Greens
  • Bok Choy
  • Boston Lettuce
  • Buttercrunch Lettuce
  • Cabbage
  • Carrot Tops
  • Collard Greens
  • Coriander (Cilantro)
  • Dandelion Greens
  • Gai Lan (Chinese Broccoli)
  • Kale
  • Mint Leaves
  • Mustard Greens
  • Parsley
  • Purslane
  • Radish Greens
  • Romaine Lettuce
  • Sorrel
  • Spinach
  • Sprouts
  • Swiss Chard
  • Tatsoi
  • Turnip Greens
  • Watercress
  • Yu Choy

I don’t know about you, but I love wandering through the fruits and vegetables section in the supermarket, searching for new things to try.

There are literally hundreds of different green edible plants out there!


Why it's important to rotate your greens

Donna Harrison

I created Healthy Food Tribe because I am passionate about health, nutrition and green living, and I want to share my journey towards a better health with you.

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