We don’t always make wise choices when it comes to using fruit and vegetables in our daily food choices, we can be so predictable and can I say boring as we tend to stick to the same choices all the time
Eating your Rainbow!!! This is a fabulous way to ensure we are providing our bodies with all the essential vitamins and minerals and fibre that we need and also helps us to stave off boredom.
Thinking about colours of fruit and vegetables and their benefits are you having plenty that are:-
Red – Antioxidants, provide protection from cancer and age-related diseases i.e. Alzheimer, good for maintaining lower blood pressure and a healthy heart
Yellow/orange – Help your nervous system, good source of Vit C, reduce the risk of heart attack or stroke, help with digestive system, antioxidants and improve blood health
White – support immune system to fight off infection, help lover cholesterol and blood pressure
Green – inhibit the action of carcinogens and promote healthy body functions
Blue/Purple – Slow the process of aging, improve memory and cell communication and an Antioxidants, reduce the risk of cancer, heart disease and Alzheimers
Why are fruit and veg important?
Fruit and vegetables are the polyfilla to your eating they can fill you up and provide your body with essential vitamins and minerals and because they are low in calories can help free up valuable calories for treats.
However 10 lettuces for lunch would fill you up, but would it satisfy you and how long before you are looking for something else?
We should all know healthy eating means its important that we have 5 servings a day of either fruit/vegetables or a combination of both as a minimum.
Is a slice of tomato, a slice of cucumber, a pickled onion, a lettuce leaf and a slice of beetroot your 5–a–day? Because if it is then I’m sorry that is not enough to qualify as 5 servings, and with the best will in the world that is also not going to fill you up which can then leave you looking for other foods (possibly high calorie snacks) to bridge the gap
So how could you include more fruit and vegetables in your day?
Let’s think about the 3 meals a day that we should have, breakfast, lunch and evening meal and how we could include more fruit and vegetables to keep us full and satisfied always remembering it’s not always possible to do so.
- Try adding different fruit to your chosen cereals e.g. chopped banana, stewed apple, chopped apple, blueberries, strawberries in fact any fruit you fancy
- Scrambled egg on toast/muffin add some tomatoes, mushrooms
- Yoghurt – instead of buying the fruit flavoured yoghurts which tend to have lots of sugar try adding a few drops of vanilla essence and your fruit of choice.
- Add fruit to your salad – apples, mandarin oranges, pineapple
- Add fruit to your soup – we all have probably heard of carrot and orange soup
- Add salad to your “Ham” sandwich
- Add a bowl of homemade vegetable soup as a starter to your sandwich to make it a 2-course lunch
- Add a sugar free jelly with added fruit to possible make it a 3 course lunch
- stews and casseroles are normally filling but what makes them more filling and substantial is adding even more vegetables and I don’t mean potatoes
- As a starter again a bowl of homemade vegetable soup is an option, but what about crudites and low fat dips which would not only add the vegetables but also the crunch factor which is also beneficial to feeling full, or even something as quick and easy as a melon starter
- Why not make a “Meat” and 2 vegetables meal into a “Meat” and 3 vegetables meal
- When it comes to dessert/puddings an awful lot of different fruits can be baked which transforms the taste and texture all helping to keep boredom at bay
The above are just a few suggestions to help you think about increasing your fruit and vegetable intake on a daily basis. We can be very good at focusing on the negatives in any situation so instead of looking at the reasons why you can’t include extra fruit and vegetables we should all be looking at how we can do this.