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Corinna's January recipe of the month: butternut squash

Butternut Squash

Rich in phytonutrients, antioxidants, low in fat, and high in fiber, makes butternut squash exceptionally healthy like many other gifts from the garden. It provides significant amounts of potassium, which is important for bone health, and vitamin B6, which is essential for the proper functioning of both the nervous and immune systems.

Butternut squash's orange hue indicates its high abundance of super nutrients called carotenoids, which have been shown to protect against heart disease. This squash is particularly high in beta-carotene which is converted to vitamin A by the body. You can get nearly half your recommended daily dose of vitamin C in just a one cup serving.

Because of its high antioxidant content, butternut squash may also have anti-inflammatory effects which could help reduce the risk of inflammation-related disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis and asthma.

Savory Butternut Squash Soup

1 large butternut squash

1 Tbsp. butter (organic if possible)

1 large yellow onion diced

3 cloves of garlic

1 carton of chicken or vegetable broth (low sodium or homemade is best)

1-2 Tbsp. oregano dried or fresh

1-2 Tbsp. basil dried or fresh

Cut the butternut squash in half lengthwise and remove the seeds. Place into a baking dish face down with about one inch of water. Bake at 400 degrees for about 45 minutes or until soft

Melt the butter in a saucepan and saut the onion, garlic, oregano, and basil. Cook until the onion is soft, about five minutes.

Scoop the butternut squash into a blender, along with the saut ed spices, and slowly add the broth while blending until desired consistency is reached. Serve hot or freeze for later.

Corinna Maggy is the owner of Corinna Maggy Fitness Consulting, and Women On Weights, a health and fitness program developed specifically for women. She is a National Academy of Sports Medicine Certified Personal Trainer and Corrective Exercise Specialist. Corinna offers private personal training, small group classes, and both individual and group weight management programs as well as corporate wellness programs. She can be reached at 605-3549 or by e-mail at corinnamaggy@yahoo.com.

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