Can fruits and veggies be the secret of your energy?
Fruits and vegetables are a leading source of fibre and other essential elements for optimum health, so eating them is vital at any age. These nutrients have been demonstrated to aid in the prevention/reduction of ailments that develop with age.
Reaching Your Fruits and Vegetables Goal for a Healthy Diet:
Increase your daily intake of fruits and veggies by following these easy steps.
- Vegetables and fruits can be added to your favourite cuisines. Find ways to include fruits and vegetables in the meals you normally consume. For instance, you may mix fruit into your yoghurt or cereal, add strawberries or blueberries to your pancakes, pack additional vegetables into your sandwich, top your pizza with vegetables, add greens to your favourite casserole or pasta dish, or cram extra vegetables into your omelette.
- Get rid of the unhealthy food in your pantry. When given the choice between three dietary options—an equal quantity of healthy and unhealthy foods, or more healthy foods, or more unhealthy foods—researchers compared what participants chose to eat. The findings, which were released in BMC Public Health in November 2018, showed that choosing healthy options was more likely to occur when unhealthy ones were eliminated. Stocking up on veggies is a nice idea, but the real solution is to stop buying processed foods.
- List the dishes that feature your favourite vegetables. Keep a collection of recipes close at hand so you have them as a reference while making your shopping list.
- Vegetarian cuisine: Try a new vegetarian recipe at least once a week instead of eating meat. Research has shown that plant-based diets were linked to lower risks of cardiovascular disease and lower overall mortality.
- Prepare canned and freezer food alternatives. Research has shown that these have just as much nutritional value as fresh foods and are frequently more affordable. Just remember to read the labels because sometimes canned foods may contain a lot of added sugar or sodium.
- Consider a fruit smoothie in the morning. You can easily pile fruits and veggies into a healthy smoothie, which can even “hide” the tastes you may not love, like spinach.
- Do more meal prep. Chopping up a few vegetables in advance and storing them in your fridge can make you more likely to reach for them when throwing together meals.
Challenges people face while adding fruits & veggies to meals:
Cost: Cost could be a concern especially when you are on a tight budget. If so, you could wish to add additional frozen or canned options since they might be less expensive. They are nutritionally comparable to fresh produce.
Mobility issues: It could be challenging for elderly individuals who are no longer able to drive to go shopping for fresh vegetables. That’s true for anyone with mobility issues, but there are some ways to overcome those challenges, such as using a grocery delivery service.
Age-related health changes: As you age, you can notice that your sense of taste has deteriorated, that you can't tolerate some foods as well, or that your appetite has decreased overall. Some people struggle to chew some foods because of tooth issues. While all of these things are inevitable as we get older, they might make it challenging to eat all the meals and nutrients we require. Therefore, it's critical to maximise the value of each bite.
While drawing a conclusion regarding adding fruits and veggies to meals, one thing to take into consideration is realising that balance is the ultimate key.
Fruits and vegetables are rich sources of natural fibre, vitamins, minerals, and other compounds that your body needs to function properly. So next time you visit the grocery store, consider picking out a different fruit or vegetable to try each time. Store raw vegetables in the refrigerator and dried fruits in your gym bag for snacks.
Follow these simple tips:
- Aim to make breakfast a part of your routine..never skip breakfast!
- Choose complex carbohydrates, lean protein sources, healthy fats, and a wide variety of fruits and veggies.
- Stock your fridge and gym bag with healthy workout snacks.
The right balance of carbohydrates, protein, and other nutrients can help fuel your exercise routine and help you lead an active lifestyle.