Although these may be a very important part of your diet, they aren’t necessarily the champions I’m thinking of.
Do you know it? Do you have a guess?
FRUITS and VEGGIES!! Were you ready for that excitement?
Though maybe not viewed as a hero in your eyes; no matter who you are, age, gender, physical activity level, weight, it goes on… you NEED these in your diet every day.
Probably not brand-new information but are you doing it? Are you trying to do it? Are you kids doing it?
I’ll be the first to complain about the struggles of picky eaters in the house, but it’s still so important to include these powerful foods every day. You don’t have to love them; it might just be tolerating them in the beginning.
Here are a few reasons I’m hoping to convince you to care:
- Fiber – your friend in more ways than 2. Fiber keeps us fuller for longer, can lower cholesterol, stabilizes blood sugars and keeps us regular. Fruits and veggies are an amazing source of fiber.
- Antioxidants, Vitamins and Minerals – little superheroes inside a bigger one. These protect your cells from damage and eating fruits and veggies is one of the best ways to include these in your diet.
- Disguised benefits – when you increase your intake of fruits and vegetables, you might decrease your intake of things that aren’t so healthy for us to be eating regularly.
- Fight disease, or prevent it – Cancer, obesity, Type 2 Diabetes, Hypertension, Stroke, among other things.
- Because, yum – they taste good! Figure out what you like and how you like it! Prepare it differently, pair it with something else and remember, just because you didn’t like it 10 years ago doesn’t mean you don’t now.
- They’re naturally low in sodium and fat, which isn’t exciting necessarily, but it’s very important.
If you’re already including this in your diet, GREAT, keep on doing that!! If you aren’t and you’re scared. Don’t be. Start slow and with something you know you like!! Grilling, roast, baking, air frying, or even just plain raw, you may find you like it cooked a different way, or by not cooking at all.
Use snacks as opportunities to fill nutrition gaps. Pack an apple, or some berries, or whatever is in season. Grab some raw veggies and try them with hummus or even some ranch.
If you’re cooking veggies for dinner, cook a little extra and use that as your snack for the day. Be creative, but be open-minded.
These really are power foods you want to be friends with.