Both your mother and your doctor have probably told you at some point that you need to eat more vegetables. As summer winds down, how can you ensure that you are eating enough vegetables without eating the same boring desk salad every day for lunch? FitClub has you covered with a list of clever ways to eat more vegetables every day. Think of it has hiding the broccoli you hated as a child, but still managing to reap the benefits!
If you need actual science to support the theory that you need to eat more vegetables, it’s there. Vegetables are full of the vitamins and antioxidants that you need to achieve your best health. According to researchers at Harvard University, vegetables also may prevent cardiovascular disease, some types of cancer, aid in digestion, and naturally lower your blood sugar.
Vegetables are also loaded with fiber and take longer for your stomach to digest, meaning that you get to savor that “I’m full” feeling without trying to kill the hunger with junk food an hour after you eat. Naturally low in calories, vegetables are easily the best bang for your calorie buck when you’re trying to improve your health and lose a few pounds.
How to do it?
- No one said you had to eat the same lettuce every day. If you’re tired of your standard romaine lettuce based salad, think outside the bag and try adding kale, spinach, or arugula as the base of your salad. The different types of lettuce will add different texture and taste and help you achieve a more balanced blend of vitamins and nutrients. Adding cabbage as the base of your salad not only gives you more crunch with each bite, but cabbage is known as a “mega-detoxifier”. Add a healthy portion of lean protein to make your salad feel more like meal!
- Try something new. If you normally buy the same vegetables every time you’re at the grocery store, try to expand your palate and options by choosing something new each time you go. Even if you don’t know how to prepare a less common vegetable, the internet can be a great resource for diving into an obscure recipe. Farmers markets are also a great place to try a new vegetable and you can ask right at the stand the best way to prepare your new find.
- Sneak your veggies into your smoothies. If you love the taste of a fruit smoothie, try adding a handful of spinach to your next fruity blend. Adding spinach to a fruit smoothie won’t change the sweet taste of the fruit and you will still get the wide array of vitamins and minerals found in spinach. Try a cup of almond milk, one sweet apple, a handful of spinach and a dash of cinnamon. You’ll barely taste the spinach over the sweetness of the apple.
- Get creative in the kitchen. Making your own sauce for pasta or another family favorite? Add vegetables whenever you have the chance. Adding onions, green peppers, jalapeños, or spinach to a pasta sauce adds flavor and healthy benefits without the boredom that comes from eating the same salad every day. Zucchini can even be added to baked chocolate desserts, giving you the full benefit of another helping of vegetables while you enjoy a treat.
The more you seek to add vegetables to every meal, the more creative you might find yourself becoming in the kitchen. Share your best advice for sneaking in another helping of vegetables in the comment section!