Elizabeth Fassberg, R.D. is the Avagliano family’s nutrition coach for the Healthy Family Challenge.
It’s not just an apple a day that will keep the doctor away. You should have oranges, mangoes, green peppers, tomatoes and a whole variety of fruit and vegetables to stay healthy. People who do have reduced rates of heart disease, cancer, diabetes and other diet-related diseases. Make it a priority to upgrade your diet by including either a fruit and/or a vegetable at all snacks and meals. Here’s how:
Skip the pre-packaged “100 calorie” bars or bags. Instead, opt for some fresh vegetables and hummus or apple and peanut butter or some carrots and a slice of cheese for a more satisfying snack.
Make mornings more interesting. For breakfast–which you should eat every day–add a large handful of blueberries or any fruit to cereal. In one meal, you’ll have already gotten a serving of fruit in for the day. If you prefer eggs for breakfast, stir in some chopped tomatoes and spinach and you’ve added a big vitamin and mineral boost to your meal.
Squeeze it into the afternoon. For lunch, add lettuce, avocado and sprouts to your sandwich.
Change your dinner plate. Make half your plate vegetables and fruit.
Switch up dessert. If you love something decadent after dinner, dip your strawberries or banana in some melted dark chocolate!
Don’t get stuck in a rut eating the same vegetable and fruit every day. Since they all contain different vitamins and minerals, variety is key.
Take a look in the grocery store or visit your local farmer’s market to see what’s in season. Seasonal fruit and vegetables are usually less expensive. If you’re worried your vegetables and fruit go bad before you use them, then buy frozen. They’re also an excellent option especially in the winter months when local produce is not available.
Which of these tips are you most likely to try this week? Post a comment and tell me!
Registered dietician Elizabeth Fassberg runs Eat Food, a New York City-based company that designs and delivers custom food and nutrition programs for businesses, organizations and individuals. She’s coaching the Avagliano family through the six-month Healthy Family Challenge.