Fruits and Vegetables: Stop the Excuses!
By Sara Butler
It’s important for your continued health and wellness to get five servings of vegetables and fruits per day. But many people come up with excuses as to why they can’t get the servings they need. Here are some of the biggest excuses and how to bust them so you can reach your health and wellness goal of a balanced and nutritious diet!
Excuse No. 1: Buying Vegetables and Fruits is Expensive and They Spoil too Fast
This excuse exists because there is some truth to it. Fresh fruits and vegetables can be expensive and they do go bad if you don’t eat them in a timely manner. You can overcome these things by:
- Buying in season – When you buy fruits and vegetables in season, they’ll be at their nutritional peak and they’ll be less expensive
- Go ripe and unripe – Buy items that tend to ripen quickly, such as bananas or avocados, so they can sit around over the course of the week and you can eat them later
- Store them right – You should store your fruits and vegetables on the top shelf of your refrigerator or on your kitchen counter; that way, you won’t forget about them and you’ll be more likely to eat them before they go bad
Excuse No. 2: They Take Too Long to Cook
Many people assume that fresh fruits and vegetables take too long to prepare, so they opt for processed boxed foods instead. You may have to invest a little more time, but you can expedite the prep by:
- Using the salad bar – You can find fresh sliced vegetables and fruit at your local grocery store salad bar, helping to cut down on prep time
- Use frozen – Frozen and canned vegetables are just as good for you. Just beware of canned vegetables because they are often high in sodium
- Prep ahead of time – Prep your vegetables and fruits at the beginning of the week and store them in containers to use them throughout the week
Excuse No. 3: Cooking Vegetables Reduces Their Nutrients
A lot of people fall victim to the idea that cooking vegetables leeches out their nutrients, but that’s not the whole truth. They do lose nutrients when exposed to air and heat, but how you prepare your vegetables can help to keep that from happening. Cook only until they're a little tender but still crisp. Steaming will help you achieve this instead of boiling. You should also use as little water as you can while cooking to help reduce how many vitamins and minerals you lose in the process.
You can eat your fruits and vegetables -- and like it! Confront your excuses and overcome them!
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Albuquerque, N.M.