We all know that we need to get more vegetables in our diets. It’s something we’ve been told since we were little kids. Whether the advice is coming from national nutrition organizations or from your mom, the advice is sound.
Vegetables are packed with vitamins and minerals, they are high in fibre and (unlike fruits), they are low in sugar. It’s a no brainer. You should be eating lots of veggies. I even know a prominent nutritionist who teaches people that eating healthy can be as simple as following his “5 words formula” ie: Eat Some Food, Mostly Vegetables. If, every time you eat, you eat “mostly vegetables”, you’ll be well on your way to the ideal diet.
Having said all of the above, I am constantly shocked and amazed when I check client’s food journals and they’ve consumed ONE SINGLE serving of vegetables over two entire days! An eating style like that will surely lead to problems over time (And may be the reason that they came to me in the first place!).
We’re busy, we don’t like cooking, we don’t want to think… blah, blah, blah. EAT YOUR VEGGIES!!! The more colour the better. Iceberg lettuce and cucumbers are neutral at best. They aren’t bad for you, but, they really don’t contribute much to your overall healthy eating plan. Red peppers, yellow beans, green broccoli, DARK leafy spinach. The more colour that a vegetable has (excepting cauliflower and cabbage), the more nutrients that veggie has.
Here are 5 ways that you can, painlessly and easily, get more vegetables in your diet.
1- Add washed baby spinach to your sandwiches. Put them in a wrap with your favourite meat and add a handful of leaves to your regular mixed salad.
2- Blend kale or spinach into a protein smoothie along with some fruit. The sugar and taste of the fruit make the spinach or kale virtually tasteless. Try almond milk, frozen strawberries, a handful of kale and vanilla whey protein powder (Isagenix “Isalean Pro” is my favourite).
3- Add frozen mixed vegetables into soups that you make or even healthy canned soups that you buy. Same goes for stew. Kick up the nutrient content while adding zero work.
4- Sautee mushrooms, peppers and onions before adding scrambled eggs to your frying pan to make a really “fancy” omelette worthy of Sunday brunch.
5- If you are a “pepperoni pizza” person, experiment with at least one vegetable topping each time you order. Pizza can be complete junk food (pepperoni only on white flour crust) or can actually be very healthy (all vegetable toppings on thin whole wheat or muti-grain crust). You don’t have to go all the way at once, just start moving in the direction of “better”.