The health benefits of fruits and vegetables are numerous. Fruits and veggies are packed with vitamins, minerals, phytochemical and antioxidants--disease fighting agents that will help protect your health!
Often, it is challenging the meet the recommended serving size of fruits and vegetables. Experts recommend 8-9 servings of fruits and vegetables per day. This number may sound high, especially if produce is not usually on the daily meal plan. Here are some tips to help add more fruits/vegetables into your daily routine.
- Increase your intake gradually. If you don't eat fruits or vegetables, make it a goal to add 1-2 servings of fruit or vegetables per day. If you are already doing this, increase your intake to 3-4 servings of fruits and vegetable per day.
- Choose fruits and vegetables for side dishes at all meals. Look for frozen vegetables that are sold in microwavable bags-this makes for quick and easy preparation.
- Buy vegetables that require minimal preparation. Choose pre washed carrots, pre washed lettuce, or grape tomatoes.
- Base your meals around vegetables. For example, try vegetable stir fry with chicken on the side, chef’s salad with grilled chicken or vegetable wraps.
- Incorporate vegetables into snacks-try hummus with carrot sticks or apple slices with peanut butter.
- Fortify your main dishes with vegetables. Add several spoonful’s of canned vegetables to your next soup. Or incorporate frozen spinach to your next lasagna dish.
Consider Lifestyle Changes
- Eat healthy while on vacation! Choose one splurge meal a day and try to eat relatively healthy the rest of the time.
- Reconsider your snack choices. Here's some healthy summer snack tips.
- Watch the ingredients you cook with. Often, sugar and fat can be replace with applesauce or an applesauce substitute.
- Make a game plan and stick to it. Here's tips on keeping your resolution!
Favorite Healthy Foods
Savory Stuffed Peppers
A combination of ground turkey, feta cheese and spices create a healthy, delicious and simple dinner!
-4 bell peppers, tops and seeds removed
-1 pound 93% lean ground turkey
-1 tablespoon olive oil
-½ onion, chopped
-1 cup chopped mushrooms
-1 cup zucchini, finely chopped
-1 cup crumbled feta cheese
-1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained
-1 cup quinoa, cooked
-1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
-½ teaspoon Garlic powder
-½ teaspoon black pepper
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Fill a large sauce pan with water and bring to boil.
- Rinse peppers. Remove the tops and seeds from peppers. Add peppers to boiling water and cook 5 minutes. Remove from water.
- In large skillet over medium heat, cook the ground turkey until browned and temperature reaches 165 F. Rinse, drain and set aside.
- Heat olive oil in skillet over medium heat.
- Combine onion, mushrooms and zucchini. Cook until tender.
- Add the cooked ground turkey, cooked quinoa and feta cheese.
- Mix in the tomatoes.
- Add garlic powder, italian seasoning and pepper. Mix well.
- Slice peppers in half and place face up in 9x13 inch baking pan.
- Divide the skillet mixture amongst the six peppers and fill each pepper to the top with mixture.
- Bake in oven for 15 minutes. Serve warm.