Are you getting enough fruit and vegetables in your daily diet? Well, if you read the latest statistics published by the CSIRO, you most probably are not. According to the latest figures only 24% of Australian women are eating enough fruit and vegetables and a tiny 15% of men (for more information, click here: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-04-03/fruit-and-veggies-four-in-five-australians-not-eating-enough/8409766 ). Now that is scary! This week, I want to explain what is considered an adequate intake of fruit and vegetables in your diet and how you can easily boost your intake to make sure you are having enough.
According to Australian Dietary Guidelines, we should be eating 2 pieces of fruit and 5 serves of vegetables every day. While this doesn’t sound like much, obviously it is a struggle for most people to achieve. Be aware that a piece of fruit should be at least 150g, so 2 grapes does not count as 2 pieces of fruit. 1 serve of fruit is equivalent to a medium-sized apple / orange / banana / pear etc. One serve of vegetables will vary depending on what you choose. The following is an example of 1 serve vegetables : ½ cup cooked green or orange vegetables OR 1 cup raw salad vegetables OR ½ medium potato OR ½ cup of corn OR ½ cup canned beans / lentils OR 1 medium tomato.
Did you do a quick estimate of how much you are eating when you read the list above? If you can see that your F&V intake is sadly lacking, you need to make some changes to your diet to incorporate the much needed foods your body is missing. Consider the following ways to up your daily fruit and vegetable intake:
- Forget the biscuits at smoko! Instead, have a piece of fruit at morning and afternoon tea EVERY day. This way you will achieve your daily two pieces of fruit AND you will save yourself a heap of empty calories too, especially if you usually help yourself to the biscuit jar or vending machine at these times. By the way, these should be whole pieces of fruit – juices do NOT count as a piece of fruit.
- Ditch the sandwich and take a salad to work during the week. Just by shredding a few lettuce leaves, cutting up a tomato and grating some carrot and beetroot into a plastic container, you are eating over half your vegetable allowance for the day. All you need to add is a tin of tuna / salmon to your lunchbox and VOILA, there you have a healthy, nutrient dense lunch.
- If salad isn’t your thing (and it can be a bit tough to eat once Winter is here), make a big vegetable and lentil soup at the start of the week and take this for your work lunches. A vege-packed soup can be very filling and again, it is a very easy way to boost your vege consumption for the day.
- When preparing dinner, make sure you have at least 3 different coloured vegetables on your plate i.e. broccoli, cabbage and carrot. By adapting the ‘3-colours on your plate every night’ it will help you to get a healthy dose of vitamins and minerals and definitely get you ‘over the line’ for your 5 serves of vegetables a day.
The Natural Way is not just a weight loss program – we educate our clients, while they lose weight, on healthy eating and lifestyles via our Healthy Living Maintenance program (click here to find out more: http://www.thenaturalway.com.au/product/healthy-living-programme/). So when our clients get to goal, not only have they achieved their weight loss ‘dream’, they know how to keep their weight off – FOR LIFE. Call your nearest clinic on 1300 SLIMMER (1300 754663) and book your FREE appointment to find out more about how our fabulous program can work for you.
Visit our website: www.thenaturalway.com.au