It’s National Eat Your Veggies Day! Did you eat enough vegetables today? If not, know you’re not alone. Just 1 in 10 adults meet the federal vegetable recommendations. Depending on age and sex, adults are recommended to eat at least 2 to 3 cups per day of vegetables as part of a healthy eating pattern.1
Besides simply tasting delicious, vegetables have so many benefits: they reduce the risk for heart disease, stroke and help manage body weight when consumed in place of more calorie-dense foods, and when combined with a healthy diet and exercise program. Not only that, but vegetables provide color, texture, and appeal to every one of your meals! They are a convenient on-the-go snack option that are low in calories and fun to eat.
Whether its taste, cost, convenience, or texture, people find all sorts of reasons not to eat their vegetables. If you are a parent and feel like you are losing the war of getting your kids to eat healthier, a college student looking to save money and space in your mini fridge, or someone who just can’t tolerate another serving of boring, steamed vegetables, there are many tricks to help you meet your daily servings!
- Remember, all forms of vegetables count. Use fresh, canned and frozen foods. Prevent spoilage by using your perishable produce at the beginning of the week and canned/frozen at the end.
- Get your kids involved. Have them choose vegetables they want to see in their meals and snacks. Let them pick by color or challenge them to try something new! Also use shopping as an educational opportunity for kids learning to read. For example, serve avocados on “A” day; broccoli on “B” day, etc.
- Don’t be deterred by cost. With careful menu planning, smart storage and preparation, and good shopping techniques, you can make the most out of your food budget. Make sure you stick to your list while at the store. Plan your meals around vegetables and prepare more for leftovers. Soups, stews, and casseroles all make excellent meals that can be frozen for future uses. Finally, shop in season, and stock up when you see items on special.
- Mix in vegetables for picky eaters. Sneak in vegetables whenever possible. For example, blend spinach and/or kale in smoothies; add zucchini or carrots to muffins. You can even bake mini vegetable quiches in muffin tins and have them ready in the morning.
- “A goal without a plan is just a wish.” If your goal is to help your family eat more vegetables, then plan! Pick one night a week to chop and dice all vegetables and store in containers. This makes cooking at the end of a long day much easier; pre-sliced snacks are also easily accessible for little hands. Prepare all meals ahead of time. If a meal is lacking in vegetables one evening, for example, keep a bag of frozen vegetables handy. Simply season them and heat up to serve as a nutritious side dish.
- Eating Greens by PURE on a daily basis adds unique nutrients to your diet that may be lacking in vitamins and minerals. It ensures you are getting a full range of nutrients that your body needs to function properly. Greens is made up of 4 Proprietary PURE Blends that use some of the most beneficial superfoods, botanicals, superfruits and mushrooms available.
How do you include vegetables at every meal? Have you had success integrating a wide variety of vegetables into your family’s diet? Let us know on social media @livepureglobal.