Eat Your Veges

01 May 2014

“An apple a day keeps the doctor away!” That’s what I heard growing up.

Maybe your mom added, “Eat your vegetables!”

I actually don’t remember my mom saying that. In fact, I hardly met a vegetable that didn’t come from a can except for corn on the cob, iceberg lettuce (ugh), acorn squash, and potatoes (those are a starch and don’t count) until I was a teenager. (I do remember the day I discovered cherries and ate the whole flippin bag!)

I also remember arguing with my home economics teacher in the 8th grade as I thought a spoonful of strawberry jam in my morning Cream of Wheat cereal counted as a fruit! I had so much to learn!

I grew up in a time when convenience foods were all the rage; they included store-bought canned green beans, peas and corn, pot pies and (shazam!) TV dinners!

Somewhere in the rush to convenience, nutrition got lost.

So here’s are two questions: Do you eat to get full or satisfy cravings? Or do you eat to load your body with quality fuel packed with vitamins and minerals?

The daily-recommended servings for fruits and vegetables are all over the place. A good rule of thumb is 5-7 servings. Yes, that's everyday.

Fresh fruits and vegetables contain nutrients and micronutrients that are essential for good health. They fight free radicals (rogue cells that cause havoc, even cancer). They are vitally important for heart health, good blood pressure, gastrointestinal health (good gut), and even proper vision, just to name a few.

I’m always looking for creative ways to pack in those veges. I wrote before how I begin almost everyday with a fruit smoothie with added protein. I like having 2-3 servings in me before lunch.

Recently I realized I can stir-fry almost anything.

Pour a little olive oil in a skillet and add whatever vegetables you like.

Even kale added to other veges like zucchini, onion, peppers, carrots and celery (together or in any combination) is awesome! Add a little salt and seasoning, and VOILA! You have a very healthy side to accompany a protein!

Experiment yourself with other favorites in various combinations. Get creative. Look for ways to up your fruits and especially vegetables. And remember, the more color, the more the nutrition!

Feel like you can’t afford to eat well? You can’t afford not too.

We find a way to do what is important to us.

So get creative and eat life-giving foods! Get Control Of Your Health!

 

For more information and encouragement, read this helpful article from the Harvard School of Public Health: http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/vegetables-full-story/

Royalty-free vegetable basket image by “vanmarie” in Spain. Retrieved from http://www.freeimages.com/photo/1440512

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