One of the first questions I ask all new clients is…
What are the 3 most important things you could be doing to improve your health?
(Quick. Answer it for yourself before continuing to read.)
There are a handful of answers that show up ALL THE TIME.
One of them is ‘Eat more vegetables’.
Everyone knows they should. I bet you do too. Right?
Studies show that 9+ servings per day is where you get the ‘fruit and vegetable benefits’.
What does 9+ servings even look like?
One serving = ½ cup raw or cooked veggies
(exception: one serving of lettuce / raw leafy greens = 1 cup.
Corn doesn’t really count – it’s more of a starch. The same thing goes for potatoes. Eat both in moderation. Choose red-skinned, purple or blue potato varieties to get the phytonutrients.
One serving = ½ cup chopped or 1 small / medium whole piece of fruit
(exception: one serving dried fruit = ¼ cup)
For most people, 3-5 servings of fruit per day is perfectly fine, although people with insulin resistance, diabetes, PCOS, adrenal insufficiency or metabolic syndrome may see improvements by restricting fruit intake to one to two servings a day, and by choosing fruits that are lower in sugar.
Some easy ways to add more fruits and vegetables into your day
- Add a side of green salad to all your lunch and dinner meals for an additional 4 servings per day.
- One cup of lettuce + ½ cup of chopped veggies = 2 servings of veggies per meal x 2 meals per day = 4 servings per day
- Enjoy vegetables at breakfast. This will add 2+ servings per day.
- Veggie scrambles or omelettes (build in vegetable leftovers when making dinner the night before)
- On Sunday, make a frittata to eat throughout the week.
- Avocado toast with eggs
- Replace toast with half a roasted sweet potato as a side to your eggs. Roast a few upfront so you can quickly reheat in the am.
- Smoothie with fruits and veggies
- Dinner leftovers
- Get some fruits and vegetables at snack time. This will easily add 1- 3 servings per day.
- Use raw or lightly steamed vegetables as ‘dippers’ for humus, bean dip, guacamole or olive tapenade – bell peppers, endive leaves, quartered radishes, cucumber slices, sugar snap peas, green beans.
- Boiled, salted edamame in their pods. Buy in frozen section. Add to pot of water. Bring to a boil. Drain. Salt.
- Half a baked sweet potato with butter or coconut oil and sea salt. Great choice for when you’re craving carbs.
- Bean salad with chopped veggies.
- Smoothie Bowl.
- Make vegetables a meal. Try some new recipes where vegetables take center stage.
- Roasted Vegetable Soup
- Roasted Winter Vegetables with Chickpeas – chop sweet potato, halve brussels sprouts, thinly slice shallots and rinse and drain a can of chick peas. Toss with olive oil and sea salt; roast at 375 for about 40 minutes.
- Spaghetti Squash Primavera. Saute a mess of your favorite veggies in garlic and olive oil serve over spaghetti squash and garnish with parmesan cheese.