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Why Aren’t we Eating our Veggies? - Dietetic Directions - Dietitian and Nutritionist in Kitchener/Waterloo
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Why Aren’t we Eating our Veggies?

Why Aren’t we Eating our Veggies?

Do you get enough veggies in your diet? The sad reality is probably not. Last week, in celebration of National Eat your Vegetables Day, Subway publicized their study findings (among 2,019 Americans) that an astounding 84 percent aren’t meeting daily requirements. In Canada, when it comes to meeting the 7-10 servings of fruits and vegetables, men eat around 3.5 servings and women eat 4.5 per day. Needless to say, we have room for improvement!

 

Let’s explore why it’s so challenging to get enough veggies (and fruits) in our diets? Then in part two of this series, I’ll provide my top 7 veggie boosting tips to help you meet your daily requirements with ease!

 

Why do we Need Veggies?

  1. Prevents widespread health problems (heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity etc.)
  2. Helps to prevent some types of cancers
  3. Low in calories and high in vitamins and minerals (potassium, vitamin K, folic acid, vitamin A, carotenoids, etc.)

What is a Fruit or Vegetable Serving?

½ cup of cooked or fresh (zucchini, peppers, tomato, cucumber etc.)

1 cup leafy greens (salad, spinach, kale)

Medium sized apple, orange, pear etc.

½ banana or ½ grapefruit

½ cup berries (blueberries, raspberries, sliced strawberries)

DYK: that 1 medium sized apple, orange, pear etc. is 1 serving of fruit? Click To Tweet

What’s Your Excuse?

-Nothing is preventing me (47 percent of Subway research participants)

-“Too expensive” (14 percent)

-“Dislike the way they taste” (11 percent)

“Preparing them takes too long” (10 percent)

 

Bottom Line:

The best way to improve our diet is to eat more of these obviously wholesome foods– vegetables and fruits! There is always room for improvement! On a positive note, nearly all Canadians have done something to improve their eating and drinking habits over the past year (Tracking Nutrition Trends, 2014), which includes 68% stating they are eating more fruits and vegetables.  We are on the right track! Stay tuned to next blog with tips to get your there!

  • Bill

    Hmmm….yes. This is true. We don’t eat enough veggies and we know they are good for us! This is a thought-provoking topic. Many influences make it easier to eat foods that are fast and sometimes we think of vegetables and fruits as foods that take time. But they also can be fast choices when we prepare them in advance and pack them. I would fall under the group of there is no excuse but I do want to improve! Waiting for more tips 🙂 Thanks Andrea!

  • Julia

    I really enjoyed this blog topic! It is the harsh truth that most of us aren’t consuming enough vegetables in our daily diets. For me, the easiest way to ensure that I eat enough vegetables (especially in the long Canadian winters) is buying frozen vegetables. It’s affordable, lasts for a long time in the freezer and there are endless possibilities to how you prepare them 🙂

  • Andrea D’Ambrosio, RD

    Hi Bill and Julia! Thank you both for reading and sharing your insights. I agree Bill that it does take time to prepare or plan ahead. Julia, that’s a great tip for buying frozen veg too! I just posted my top 7 tips – feel free to check them out!

  • Christine Blair

    I need to make a change.