No matter what nutrition philosophy you follow, everyone agrees that veggies should occupy most of your plate.
Because they’re high in antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients that fight inflammation and free radical damage.
They naturally promote a beneficial balance between acidity and alkalinity.
They boost the immune system.
They aid in digestion and joint health.
And they delay the aging process.
Your mother may not have understood the nitty-gritty science (or maybe she did!), but she was certainly onto something when she encouraged you to eat your veggies.
Here are 7 ways to get more veggies and fruit down the hatch.
- Eat the Leaf
Leafy greens – like spinach, kale and chard – are loaded with essential minerals like calcium and magnesium. Throw them in a salad, or sauté up collard, beet, dandelion or mustard greens in garlic and onions for a simple side with a serious hit of nutrient density.
- Eat the Rainbow
Specific colours of vegetables and fruits have been shown to have specific health-promoting properties. For a fun and healthful challenge, aim to fill your fridge with all the colours of the rainbow.
- Go Green
Green plants – like zucchini, avocados, limes and green beans – are high in carotenoids that have a powerful anti-aging effect.
- Remember Red
Red plants – like pomegranates, cherries and tomatoes – have been shown to reduce the risk of prostate cancer as well as some tumours.
- Forage for Orange (and yellow!)
Orange and yellow veggies and fruits – like carrots, butternut squash and bananas – offer beta-carotene for immune support, as well as bromelain, which has been shown to aid in digestion, joint health, and the reduction of inflammatory conditions.
- Go Crazy for Cruciferous
“Cross”-shaped vegetables – like broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts – have demonstrated specific anticancer, anti-aging, and antimicrobial properties. Try my Brussels sprout coleslaw or “rice” raw broccoli or cauliflower in a food processor for a simple addition to soups, sauces, or omelets.
- Attention Athletes
Certain vegetables and tubers – like sweet potatoes, pumpkin, cassava and taro – have a higher glycemic value, which make them a great post-workout choice if you are already at your ideal body composition and looking to restock muscle glycogen
There you have it. No more excuses for not getting the plants in and working to optimize your health and feel amazing.
Now I want to hear from you. What’s your favourite way to eat more veggies (or fruit)? You know you have good ideas – and good ideas deserve to be shared. Please leave a comment below.
Yours in health,