Did your mother ever tell you to eat your veggies?
Turns out she was right! We all know we should eat more vegetables but science now tells us that the micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) and phytonutrients (important plant chemicals and compounds) are necessary for optimal functioning.
Eating 5-10 servings of vegetables a day still holds and if you’re eating very few vegetables, you may need to build on this habit over time until you’re closer the daily suggested serving amount.
You can enjoy them cooked a variety of ways and you don’t need to feel like you have to start eating huge volumes of salad (though you may come to love them in all their variety!).
Aim to eat a colourful array of veggies and add in some fruit too.
- a serving size for most vegetables is a fist size
- attempt to get 1-2 fist sized servings at each meal
- women should try to get 1 fist of vegetables, while men should get 2 fists of vegetables at each meal
- if you don’t currently eat many veggies, start by adding a fist here and a fist there until you’ve created the habit of 1-2 fistfuls of vegetables at each meal
Don’t worry about buying local or organic right now or shopping at fancy markets. The goal is to start eating vegetables at each meal. Once you’ve gotten into the habit of getting your vegetables regularly with meals, then you can look at sourcing, organics and shopping at farmer’s markets.
If you are concerned about pesticides but organic produce isn’t in your budget, you can wash vegetables with a simple solution of water and white vinegar to help get rid of pesticide residue.
Be willing to try new vegetables but if there are certain vegetables that you know you hate, skip them. There’s no point in buying a vegetable that’s going to rot in the back of your fridge. Forget the so-called superfood veggies and buy what you’ll actually eat. Experiment with different cooking methods and vegetable varieties and you may soon realize that eating your veggies isn’t as painful as you thought!