The average adult is recommended to consume 5 servings of vegetables per day. One serve is the equivalent to half of a cup of green and orange vegetables (for example broccoli, capsicum, carrots or pumpkin), or 1 cup of leafy greens (for example pak choy and salad greens). So, are you getting your 5 serves in?
I’m going to share with you 5 simple ways in which you can add more vegetables into your day so that hitting your daily intake will be easy.
#1 Add more vegetables to the meals you love. This is by far the easiest way to increase your veggie intake because you tend to eat the meals you love on a regular basis, if not daily. Classic examples are pasta dishes, you’re already boiling the noodles so you might as well throw in some carrots, cauliflower and green beans. How about home made pizza? Mushrooms, asparagus, snow peas and broccolini are fantastic toppings! Don’t knock it until you try it.
#2 Try frozen and canned vegetables. If you are short on time, or like me, sometimes don’t feel like spending a long time in the kitchen, then frozen and canned vegetables will be your best friend. Some of my favourite frozen vegetables includes peas and vegetable mixs that usually have carrot, broccoli and cauliflower. Make sure to check the back of the packet to avoid brands that have additional sauces or butter. My go to canned vegetables are beetroot and chick peas. With canned foods, check the sodium content and pick a brand with the least amount of additives.
#3 Keep some vegetables at work. There’s nothing worse than opening the lunch box and staring at a pile of soggy vegetables that loosely resemble a salad. If you have a fridge at work, store some salad greens and other ready to eat veggies to keep your lunches inspiring. That way you will be less likely to be tempted by the cafe at the bottom of your building.
#4 Order a side of vegetables. Nice and simple. Most sit down restaurants will offer vegetables as a side dish. So if you see the main you are craving is lacking in the vegetable department, no problem, you know what side dish to get. The good thing is that restaurant food is always better than home-cooked meals, for me anyway, so you know they’re going to be some tasty veggies.
#5 Explore. There are so many different vegetables out there, and I’m sure there are some you haven’t tried. Aim to get as many different colours onto your plate as possible. You never know, you might discover a fantastic new vegetable you absolutely love. For example, I recently found fennel and now know how to make a great tasting salad with it. Watch this space for the recipe!
Getting your daily intake of vegetables is only as hard as you make it. Like many things, it will come down to your mindset and motivation. *Insert motivation here* Watch your skin glow and your energy levels rise. Your gut bacteria will love you and I guarantee you will be more satisfied with each meal and indulge less in the naughty foods you have a love/hate relationship with.