Containing a host of fiber, vitamins and antioxidants, vegetables truly are the most nutritious food group – and low in calories to boot!
Don’t eat enough vegetables? You’re not alone. Here are some tips to include more veggies in your diet.
1. Have chopped veggies ready to go in the fridge. Nobody is going to peel a carrot or chop a pepper when they are ‘hangry’. But if the veggies are washed, chopped and ready to go in the fridge or in little containers to take along, you’re far more likely to eat them.
2. Try to make sure half of your plate is taken up by veggies. This is a good visual cue to make sure that your meals contain enough colorful veggies!
3. Visit a farmer’s market, talk to the farmer and appreciate your fresh, tasty, local produce! This time of year you can even buy cases of fruits or veggies. And if your family can’t eat it all, most produce will freeze just fine.
4. Keep some frozen berries, fruit and veggies on hand for when your fresh supply runs low. Frozen produce is flash frozen right after it’s picked, so it retains all of the nutrients (which is more that you can say for the “fresh” produce that’s been trucked halfway around the world and sitting on the shelf for a few days).
5. Grow a garden! Or if you don’t have space outdoors, you can even grow some vegetables indoors in pots. Try carrots, peppers or tomatoes. Fresh herbs are also easy to grow on a windowsill. Fresh tastes best!
6. Try different cooking methods. For example, don’t like kale stir fried? Try baking it to make crunchy kale chips. You can also try baking Vitamin A-rich sweet potatoes or mash them or even serve in a homemade “fry” form.
7. Dip it! Hummus or yogurt dip provides extra nutrients as well as flavor.Jennifer is a registered dietitian, registered nutritionist, and a member of the Alberta College of Dietitians and Dietitians of Canada. Combining her personal and professional passions, Jennifer loves to blog about food and eating during pregnancy and for young kids and families. You can find her on First Step Nutrition.
Main Photo Credit: Olga Miltsava/Shutterstock.com; Second Photo Credit: Alena Haurylik/Shutterstock.com