September will kick off Fruits & Veggies- More Matters month to help you remember to eat more fruits and vegetables. It’s a great time to try something new as more than 90% of of adults and children do not eat the recommended amounts of fruits and vegetables.
Every step taken towards eating more fruits and vegetables helps you and your family be at their best. Because eating fruits and vegetables may reduce your family’s risk of many diseases, we should be eating more fruits and vegetables than any other food group.
Fruits and vegetables add color, texture, and appeal to your plate and are nutritious in any form whether fresh, frozen, canned, dried or in 100% juice. They provide fiber that helps fill you up and keeps your digestive system happy while naturally low in calories.Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables may help reduce the risk of may diseases, including heart disease, high blood pressure, and some cancers while rich in vitamins and minerals to help you feel healthy and energized. You will find fruits and vegetables in an almost infinite variety. There’s always something new to try and they’re easy grab for a snack.
It’s easier to use more fruits & vegetables when you have them on hand. After shopping, use your perishable produce before reaching for frozen and canned so you have less waste. In order to incorporate more into your diet, try a favorite dish in a new way such as using spaghetti squash in place of pasta, topped with your favorite sauce or turn your favorite vegetable into soup by taking pureed, cooked vegetables, add flavor with some herbs, and thin with broth. Use fruits for dessert in place of cakes and pastries. (1)
Choosing assorted colors of fruits and vegetables is a great strategy for making sure you get the most nutritional value from your produce choices. In many cases, the deeper and darker the color of the fruit or vegetable, the greater the amount of nutrients it contains. Just look at some of the fruits and vegetables that come in a variety of colors and why they’re good for you. (2)
Red– apples, cherries, red grapes, watermelon, beets, red peppers, and tomatoes.
Benefits- Help maintain heart health, memory function and urinary tract health as well as
lower the risk of some types of cancer.
Yellow/Orange– cantaloupe, peaches, oranges, squash, corn, and carrots
Benefits-Promote heart and vision health and healthy immune system.
White or Tan/Brown– Bananas, dates, cauliflower, mushrooms, turnips
Benefits- Help maintain healthy cholesterol levels, may lower risk of some cancers.
Green– avocado, kiwi, green grapes,pears, asparagus, broccoli, cucumbers, spinach
Benefits-Help lower cancer risk, improve eye health, and keep bones and teeth strong.
Blue/Purple– Blueberries, blackberries, plums, black olives, purple cabbage, eggplant.
Benefits-Protects against some types of cancer and urinary tract infections, may boost brain health and vision.
Next time the farmer’s markets are running, visit one and pick up some fresh, locally grown fruits and vegetables. Find them in Vernal near the library on Saturday mornings from 9-1 and in Roosevelt on Thursday afternoons from 3:30- 6:30 at the old park.