We all know that we should eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. But how often have you gone through an entire day without eating of full serving of either? Let’s face it, you won’t find veggies in the vending machine, very few fast food restaurants include whole fruit on the menu, and it’s not likely that you’ll be able to order a salad for lunch at Starbucks . If you want to eat more fruits and vegetables, you need to plan ahead. But it’s easy to do, once you get the hang of it.
Tips for Eating More Fruits and Vegetables
As part of National Nutrition Month, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is promoting the Eat Right, Your Way, Every Day program. They are encouraging all of us to eat a healthy diet that is customized to fit into our busy and sometimes complicated lives. If you want to lose weight, they encourage dieters to meet with a registered dietitian to get personalized help. But if you just want to eat a healthier diet, they provide this handy tip sheet to help you make better meal and snack choices.
My favorites? I like to make a veggie wrap with roasted vegetables and low-fat cheese rolled in a whole-wheat tortilla. These are easy to pack for lunch and kids like them too. I also like to stock my freezer with frozen vegetables to steam or stir-fry or throw into a salad.
Does Juice Count As Fruit?
I follow a blog called Weighty Matters written by a Yoni Freedhoff, a writer, practicing family physician, Assistant Professor at the University of Ottawa, and founder of Ottawa’s Bariatric Medical Institute. This morning he wrote an interesting blog about fruit juice. He answers the question of whether or not juice should count as a fruit with a resounding “no.”
“Juice is sugar water with vitamins. It has drop per drop the same amount of sugar as soda pop and in some cases more (like that grape juice which has double the sugar of Coca-Cola – 10 staggering teaspoons a glass). Liquid calories don’t satiate, and they don’t pack the fiber and phytonutrients of actual fruit.”
Of course, some juice products are better than others, but in general, your best bet is to choose whole fruit rather than juice.
Want more tips about foods to eat and foods to avoid? Check out the North Memorial Healthy Weight Loss website. Or better yet, make an appointment to see a registered dietitian. Get a referral from your primary care physician to get started.