You can’t read much anymore – from a fashion magazine to the local newspaper – without seeing something about eating more fruits and veggies. These articles all give good suggestions, but I think that they miss the two most important points:
1) you almost HAVE to eat at home more to incorporate more fruits and veggies – really, how often do you see a side of broccoli as a choice on a restaurant menu (especially fast food)
2) you have to start at the grocery store; you can’t wait until mealtime to think about adding an additional fruit or veggie to a meal – it’s too late – you don’t have enough around
I offer two easy suggestions here:
1) start counting the number of different kinds of fruits and veggies that you put in your cart during a weekly grocery trip; when I first started this trick, I typically had seven to nine. Usually they were 1- bananas 2- apples 3- strawberries 4- orange juice 5- broccoli 6- frozen corn and a couple more here or there based on the season.
Now, I typically have 18-20. I’m convinced it’s just because I’m paying more attention. Today it was 1- apples 2- strawberries 3- orange juice 4- cranberry juice 5- dried cranberries 6- tomatoes 7- grape tomatoes 8- grapes 9- pineapple 10- watermelon 11- frozen corn 12- frozen green beans 13- cucumber 14- romaine lettuce 15- spinach 16- colored peppers 17- peaches 18- broccoli 19- red onions 20-peaches 21-lemons
2) replace a starch on your plate with a fruit or vegetable, usually in the form of a salad; my hubby and kids are huge exercisers, but me – not so much; i have found that if I take out the rice or potato or pasta and replace it with a small salad right on my plate, I’m adding typically two servings of vegetables
What have I learned? COUNT your fruits and veggies, BUT do it as you shop not as you eat