It seems everywhere you turn health and wellness experts are telling you to eat more fruits and vegetables.
You totally get it.
Yes, they’re full of nutrition (vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, fibre, etc.)
Yes, people who eat more fruits and vegetables live longer, healthier lives. Not to mention protecting their bodies and minds from just about every chronic disease out there.
Yes, eating more vegetables can help you maintain a healthy body weight, and even lose some fat (as long as you don’t fry them, or cover them with rich sauces).
Your question is not “Should I eat more fruits and vegetables?” but “ How can I actually do it?” As a health coach, I’m chock full of creative and delicious ways to help you eat more fruits and veggies.
Before we dive in, always start from where you are. If you’re not used to any fruits or veggies, try for just two per day and build up from there.
Don’t get overwhelmed thinking you need to overhaul your entire diet in one go.
Wherever you’re at now, I challenge you to increase it by two per day. Now, let’s dive into my suggestions on exactly HOW to add more fruits and vegetables to your diet.
Sneak them into other dishes
Some dishes are really easy to enhance with extra nutrients. What do you think of these ideas?
● Add an apple, a small handful of spinach, kale, or extra berries into your smoothie. (Grab my free Smoothie recipe ebook for more ideas, it’s available when you sign up to my newsletter here.)
● Chop an extra bit of carrot, broccoli, courgette or pepper into your soup.
● Love sandwiches? Why not have a salad with it by using any leftover tomato, lettuce, cucumber or avocado to it?
● How about eating more warm salad? Add roasted sweet potato, butternut squash, avocado, or beetroot to the usual tomato, cucumber lettuce recipe.
● Love to bake? How about substituting ¼ cup of the sugar for a ¼ cup of unsweetened applesauce?
● Used to having a small salad? Why not try a larger one and make it the main event? Serve with a soup in the colder months.
● Making tomato sauce? Add in some extra mushrooms, carrots, celery or peppers.
Add more flavour
● Steam some frozen corn and add a touch of olive oil and your favourite herb or spice.
● Use veggies as your sandwich “bread” by making a lettuce wrap.
● Don’t be afraid to spice them up. Try sauteing them for 10 minutes with a drizzle of oil and flavour them with pepper, garlic, ginger or cumin.
Snack on them
● Why not throw a banana, apple, a handful of berries or a couple of clementines into your lunch bag?
● Ditch the bread and salty snacks and munch on veggies such as carrot, celery, broccoli, cucumber or cauliflower with a dip like hummus, guacamole, or even your favourite salad dressing?
● Love sweetened yoghurt? Buy plain, and immerse it with berries, banana, pineapple or kiwi.
Take two of these suggestions and try them tomorrow. Just add two more fruits and veggies to the number you’re at today. Two more. And if you’re not an instant fan, well, try again. Research shows that sometimes it takes our taste buds several tries before actually beginning to like a new flavour. Try it; you might just find some new faves.
You can do it.
Let me know your favourite ideas in the comments below.
Want more help with your weekly shopping? Check out my pantry essentials guide ‘Pantry Essentials for healthy, nutritious living‘ to help you keep your kitchen cupboards well stocked so you never run out of the essential ingredients to make a nutritious meal. Sign up here to receive it.