November 22, 2018

Veggie Madness

A diet rich in vegetables and fruits is a great way to build variety, create balance, and increase vitamins.  Veggies can be challenging to include in the diet.  Veggies can be challenging to include in the diet as they take prep work and if we get to hungry its not the thing we reach for as we are needing a quick energy source.  Vegetables are rich in vitamins (Like Vitamin C and A; minerals/ electrolytes (examples: calcium, potassium, sodium, magnesium), and phytochemicals (examples: antioxidants, Isoflavones, Indoles, allicin).2 Each one of these things is important for optimum sports performance recovery, immunity and day to day living.  Additionally, fruits and vegetables are a source of dietary fiber which is necessary for a healthy bowel.

The Daily recommendation for an adult is 5-9 servings a day for veggies and fruits.  1 Serving of veggies is ~ 1cup of either spinach, romaine, collard greens, ½ cup of either peppers, carrots, zucchini, or 1 medium piece of fruit.

The following are some tips and tricks for improving or increasing your intake of vegetables.

  • Include vegetables in a sauce:
    • Sautee Spinach into a pasta sauce
    • Chopped carrots, celery, peppers to make it go further
  • Chile
    • Make your chili go further and throw in all your veggies in that may be about to go off
  • Include it into a Smoothie: (pineapple bliss smoothie, raspberry kale smoothie)
    • Kale
    • Spinach
  • Sandwiches
    • Add roasted peppers, zucchini or mushrooms
    • Alpha sprouts
    • Add some crunch with Cabbage
  • Omelet (eggcellent way to get extra veggies in)
    • Toss is favourite veggies
  • Veggie Kabobs
  • Pizza Toppings
    • Add Veggies to your favorite pizza
  • Dip it
    • Take your favorite dip to have with veggies for a snack or a side for dinner
  • Freeze It
    • Leftover veggies
    • Soups or pasta sauces.

The following are the benefit of vegetables:

  • Improved immunity against disease
  • Injury prevention
  • Good Gut Health
  • Anti-inflammatory agents
  • Helps to prevent some types of cancers
  • Stabilizes blood sugar levels

Check out this home storage guide for veggies to see how to keep veggies fresh for longer.  http://www.halfyourplate.ca/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/cpma_fruits_and_vegetables_storage_guide-final2.pdf

References:

  1. Health Benefits of Fruits and Vegetables. Joanne L. Slavin, Beate Lloyd.  Adv Nutr. 2012 Jul; 3(4): 506–516. Published online 2012 Jul 6.  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3649719/
  2. Home Storage Guide for Fresh Fruit and Vegetables. Fruits & Veggies Half Your Plate.   http://www.halfyourplate.ca/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/cpma_fruits_and_vegetables_storage_guide-final2.pdf
  3. What is a Food Guide Serving of Vegetables and Fruit? The government of Canada.  2007-08-14.  https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/food-nutrition/canada-food-guide/choosing-foods/vegetables-fruit/what-food-guide-serving-vegetables-fruit.html

 

 

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