Eat More Fruits and Vegetables!
Eat More Fruits and Vegetables!
When choosing a healthy diet, the number one thing you must remember is to include lots of fruits and vegetables. Fruits are an essential part of a diet because they provide nutrients and have healthy sugars and carbohydrates that our body craves. Fruits are even a great alternative when you’re in the mood for something sweet. Vegetables are full of vitamins and nutrients that your body needs. Most vegetables are also high in fiber, which is an important part of any diet.
Nutritional Benefits of Fruits and Vegetables
Eating fruits and vegetables is an easy way to switch to a healthy lifestyle. According to the National Food Pyramid, it is recommended to have between five and nine servings of fruits and vegetables per day. This may seem like a large amount, but since most fruits and vegetables are low in fat and calories, you are able to eat more. One medium sized apple has only 72 calories; it also has 2.6 grams of fiber. The fiber in the apple helps you feel satisfied and keeps you full longer. Fiber is also a necessary part to achieving a healthy lifestyle. The daily recommended fiber intake is 25 to 35 grams. This is easily attainable if you have your five to nine servings of fruits or vegetables per day. You will receive over half the daily intake from the fruits and vegetables. Eating fruits and vegetable can also protect your health. They are full of vitamins and nutrients that can protect against chronic diseases.
Reasons to Eat More Fruits and Vegetables
- Antioxidants- The fruits and vegetables on this list are high in antioxidants. This helps protect against certain types of cancer as well as other diseases. It is also a helpful tool for keeping beautiful, glowing skin.
- Taste- Fruits and vegetables are a delicious addition to any diet. As you can see here, no matter what you’re craving, there is a fruit or vegetable that will curb it.
- Variety- A list of the wide range of fruits and vegetables.
- Energy- These nutrients listed, that are found in fruits and vegetables, provide you with the energy needed to get through an intense workout, or even just your everyday routine.
- Convenience- Here are some tips for eating healthy on the go. Fruits and vegetables are an excellent choice when you are not able to sit down for a meal.
- Cost- A list of tips for getting the fruits and vegetables that you need on a budget. With the way the economy is today, being able to purchase low-cost produce is important.
- Fiber- Tips on how to get more fiber in your diet and why it is necessary.
- Vitamins- Here is a chart showing what vitamins are in each fruit and vegetable. Also shows where to find the highest percentage.
Ways to Eat More Fruits and Vegetables
- Single Servings- Having food available in single serving portions will make it easier to prepare a snack. Here are some tips that will help you achieve your goal.
- Top pizza with vegetables – An easy to follow recipe that is full of flavor and fresh vegetables.
- Roasting vegetables- Roasting vegetables is an easy task by following these tips. The different recipes provide many flavorful dishes.
- Smoothies- These smoothies are a perfect substitution for a meal. They provide 2-3 servings of fruit each.
- Salads- Not only does this salad have a lot of leafy greens in it, it also includes pears and grapes for a serving of fruit. Be creative and add a variety of vegetables and fruits to make this salad your own.
- Kid friendly snacks- These healthy and tasty treats are easy to prepare and fun to eat. Kids are sure to love them.
- Soup- This apple butternut squash soup recipe is incredibly easy to make. Not only is it delicious, you are getting both fruits and vegetables in one meal. The recipe is versatile and can be used with many different fruit and vegetable combinations.
- Freeze Dried- These easy to follow steps are an excellent way to make a delicious snack. Make them in large batches and store for later consumption.
- Dessert- These fruit filled sweet treats are sure to satisfy your sweet tooth. Make them for dessert or for an afternoon snack.
- Vegetable juice- With these recipes you can make homemade vegetable juice. Each cup is equal to 2-3 servings of vegetables. Want a sweeter juice? Add an apple or some strawberries to your recipe. You can also purchase pre-made juice for a quick snack or drink to go with a meal.
Keeping it Fresh
If available, fresh fruits and vegetables are the best option. When they are eaten fresh, they have a better texture and taste. Also, they combine better with other foods. To make sure that your fresh fruits and vegetables last as long as possible be sure to store them correctly. If they require counter-top storage be sure to keep them out of direct sunlight. Or you can place them in a breathable bag. If they are stored in the refrigerator keep in perforated bags in the storage drawers. Make sure you put fruits in one drawer and vegetables in the other. If there are spoiled fruits and vegetables fresh ones can pick up the scent of the spoiled ones and cause an unpleasant taste. Be sure to dispose of any spoiled items immediately. If fresh fruits and vegetables are not an option, frozen or canned are a great alternative. Although fresh is always better, frozen vegetables are a quick way to enjoy a side dish for an entrée. Canned fruit is also convenient when packing lunches.
Diet & Exercise
Aside from eating fruits and vegetables there are many other aspects to a healthy lifestyle. Keeping your calorie count low will help you to lose weight or maintain your current weight. You should also have a good balance of healthy carbohydrates and fats. Having a good understanding of what a healthy diet contains is the best way to a healthy lifestyle. Exercise is also extremely important to healthy living. Experts say that to maintain your weight you should exercise for 30 minutes at least three times per week. If you want to lose weight, you should exercise at least 60 minutes, five times per week. Make sure it is a good combination of cardio and strength training for the best results. Overall having a healthy balance of diet and exercise will lead you to the lifestyle you want.