Fruits & Vegetables

 

 

Whole fruits and vegetables are rich in important nutrients and fiber, and generally low in calories. Fruits and vegetables with deeply colored flesh have the highest amounts of nutrients. Stock your pantry with multiple forms; frozen, fresh, canned and dried, that will be always available to incorporate into your favorite dishes.

How can you incorporate more (deeply colored flesh) fruits and vegetables into your diet?

• Add more deeply colored flesh alternatives by substituting romaine lettuce or spinach for iceberg lettuce; green or red peppers for cucumbers and celery.

• Cut open bags of frozen broccoli, carrots and pepper slices or your favorite vegetables, after following the package cooking instructions, and stir into tomato sauce just before serving.

• Sprinkle frozen berries on the top of breakfast cereal or yogurt, they thaw quickly!

• Replace some of your apples and pears with peaches, nectarines and berries.

• Keep ready-to-eat raw vegetables handy in a clear container in the front of your refrigerator for snacks or meals-on-the-go.

• Keep a day’s supply of fresh fruit handy on the table or counter.

• Enjoy fruits as a naturally sweet end to a meal.

• As unfamiliar seasonal fruits and vegetables appear in the market consider trying them, you may find out there is something you really enjoy that you don’t usually choose.

• When eating out, choose a variety of vegetables.

• Read and follow package cooking instructions.

•  Make sure there are no cold spots in food (where bacteria can survive) when cooking in a microwave oven. For best results, cover food, stir and rotate for even cooking. If there is no turntable, rotate the dish by hand once or twice during cooking.  See here for information on food safety.

Good examples of deeply colored flesh fruits and vegetables (there are others):
Asparagus
Beets
Blueberries
Blackberries
Broccoli
Brussels sprouts
Butternut squash
Cantaloupe
Carrots
Cranberries
Collard greens
Garlic
Kale
Mangoes
Nectarines
Green, red, orange bell peppers
Papaya
Peaches
Pumpkin
Raspberries
Romaine lettuce
Spinach
Winter squash
Strawberries
Sweet potatoes/Yams
Swiss chard
Tomatoes
Turnip greens

HNRCA nutrition research: Read about research being done on leafy vegetables and bone health here.