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Why Fruits and Vegetables are Beneficial
You have most likely heard all your life that you should eat your fruits and vegetables. Over the years, it has been proven that having a variety of fruits and vegetables in your diet is extremely beneficial to your health.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, only 1 in 10 adults eat the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables.1 However, when you regularly eat fruits and vegetables, you consume the vitamins and minerals that help your body function properly.2
June is National Fresh Fruits and Vegetables Month, and we’re sharing the importance of fruits, vegetables, and how you can be sure you’re getting the right nutrients.
Health Benefits of Fruits and Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are beneficial to your body, containing different nutrients that make an impact on your health.
Here are some ways fruits and vegetables benefit your health and well-being.
- Vitamins – There are many different vitamins in fruits and vegetables, such as vitamins A, C, and E. Vitamins help boost the immune system, convert food into energy, and more.
- Minerals – Minerals are essential in the body and aid in making hormones, as well as aiding in the functioning of the heart and brain.
- Magnesium – Magnesium helps regulate blood sugar levels, nerve function, and more.
- Zinc – Zinc helps the immune system fight off bacteria.
The color of a fruit or vegetable also indicates what kind of nutrients it has. Red fruits and vegetables contain potassium and vitamin C, whereas orange and yellow fruits and vegetables are high in fiber.
Other Health Benefits
Eating fruits and vegetables can help you manage your weight because they are low in calories and high in water content. These factors make fruits and vegetables a great option for a meal or snack.
Eating fruits and vegetables not only provides you with nutrients, but with lasting health benefits as well.
Fruits and vegetables can help lower your risk of high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, and heart disease.6
Fruit and Vegetable Guide
Picking fruits and veggies
When it comes to picking and eating fruits and vegetables, there are some do’s and don’ts. Here are some tips on picking the best produce.
- Pick it up. If a fruit or vegetable is soft when you know it shouldn’t be, such as a banana or avocado, avoid buying it. There’s a good chance it’s over-ripe or bruised.
- Choose what’s in season. Fruits and vegetables taste best when they’re in-season. For example, strawberries are best in the summer. Watermelon is also best during the summer months, which is great a great snack because it contains plenty of water and aids in hydration.7
Keep fruits and vegetables fresh
Fruits and vegetables can last longer if taken care of and stored properly. Here are some tips to keep your fruits and vegetables fresh.
- Wash and dry. Wash your fruits and vegetables, preferably with a fruit and vegetable wash, then make sure they are dry before storing.
- Refrigerate ripened fruit. Most fruit ripens at room temperature. Once it’s ripened, you can place in the fridge to pause the ripening process, which will help it last a few days longer.
- Freeze. Some fruits and vegetables can be frozen up to three months.8 Once frozen, these fruits and vegetables can be used in smoothies or thawed and used in different recipes.
Eat More Fruits and Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables can be eaten fresh, cooked, frozen, canned, or dried, which gives you plenty of options when it comes to adding them to your meals.
Here are some ideas on how you can incorporate a variety of fruits and vegetables in your diet.
- Cook vegetables to go with your dinner. The options to add vegetables to your dinner are endless. Try baking a sweet potato, steaming broccoli, or grilling asparagus. If you want a simpler option, try cutting up all your vegetables and roasting them all on the same sheet pan.
- Use frozen fruits and vegetables in a smoothie. This is a great way to get nutrients while enjoying a cold treat. Smoothies are also easy on the digestive system because of the consistency. You can also add yogurt or a nut butter if you don’t like the taste of the fruit and veggies alone.
- Eat fresh or dried fruit as a snack. If you don’t want to prepare fresh fruit nor have a way to keep it cold, try dried fruit. Dried fruit is easy to take with you anywhere and can be added to snacks such as yogurt or granola.
- Eat fresh vegetables with a dip. If you don’t like snacking on vegetables alone, try eating them with a dip such as hummus, ranch, or tzatziki. Make sure that you check the nutritional facts of the dip to ensure it’s a healthy choice.
Saber Healthcare Encourages You to Eat Fruits and Vegetables
Here at Saber Healthcare, we support healthy eating. Our dietary team works to provide our residents with meals that support health and wellness.
Try eating more fruits and vegetables to increase your nutrient-intake and live a happier, healthier life!
To learn more about Saber Healthcare and the services we offer, click here.
Saber Healthcare is an organization dedicated to providing consultant services to long term care providers. This article is for informational purposes and is not meant to be seen as professional advice. Please consult with a medical expert before relying on the information provided.
- “Only 1 in 10 Adults Get Enough Fruits or Vegetables.” U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. November 16th, 2017. Accessed June 21st, 2021. https://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2017/p1116-fruit-vegetable-consumption.html.
- Davidson, Katey and Hatanaka, Miho. “Eating the Rainbow – Is It Useful and Should You Try It?” Healthline Media, healthline.com. December 18th, 2020. Accessed June 21st, 2021. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/eat-the-rainbow#benefits.
- “Fruit and Vegetables.” Victoria State Government, Better Health Channel. Accessed June 24th, 2021. https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/fruit-and-vegetables.
- “Foods that fight inflammation.” The President and Fellows of Harvard College, Harvard Health Publishing. August 29th, 2020. Accessed June 24th, 2021. https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/foods-that-fight-inflammation.
- Szalay, Jessica. “What Are Phytonutrients?” Future US Inc., Live Science. October 21st, 2015. Accessed June 24th, 2021. https://www.livescience.com/52541-phytonutrients.html#:~:text=Foods%20with%20phytonutrients%20have%20antioxidant,against%20radiation%20from%20UV%20rays.
- “5 Reasons to Eat More Color Infographic.” American Heart Association, Inc., heart.org. Accessed June 21st, 2021. https://www.heart.org/en/healthy-living/healthy-eating/add-color/5-reasons-to-eat-more-color.
- “Secret Hacks to Pick the Perfect Produce Every Time.” Galvanized Media, Eat This, Not That. February 23rd, 2021. Accessed June 21st, 2021. https://www.eatthis.com/produce-shopping-tips/.
- Lange, Caroline. “10 Tips For Keeping Produce Fresh Until Your Next Trip to the Grocery Store.” Condé Nast, bonappetit.com. March 27th, 2020. Accessed June 21st, 2021. https://www.bonappetit.com/story/keep-produce-fresh-longer.