From breakfast through dinner, here are 7 sure fire ways to get the nutrients you need to boast your immune system and help keep you full throughout the day.
1- Rise and Shine
A great place to start increasing your fruit and vegetable intake is with your breakfast. Add peppers, tomatoes, mushrooms or onions to your eggs for a delicious omelet. Make a smoothie by combining almond milk, whey protein, 1/2 cup frozen berries and ½ of a frozen banana for a super easy blended breakfast. Many greens, such as spinach, kale and Swiss chard can be added to smoothies without too much change to the flavor. Many breakfast items can be made in bulk and frozen for extra convenience when you have those busy mornings.
2. Lunchtime Makeovers
At lunch, swap out bread for lettuce. Make your next sandwich or wrap inside a leafy green. Stack 2 or 3 large, leafy greens such as Bibb lettuce, romaine, red lettuce, cabbage, or radicchio and fill with your usual sandwich ingredients. You can also pack pre-cut fruit and veggies into snack-size bags or reusable containers for an easy, on-the-go snack.
3. Rethink Your Recipes
Take recipes that you’ve used before and change them up by adding some fruits and vegetables in ways you might not have thought of before. An example would be the next time you prepare salads, pastas, sandwiches, pizzas, and casseroles, double the amount of vegetables. You can also grate or shred fruits and vegetables into sauces and meat mixtures for added flavor and a nutritional boost.
4. The Greener the Better
As general rule, the darker the greens, the more nutrient rich they are. Don’t cheat yourself on the dressing and make sure to use a full fat dressing or olive oil. Don’t fear good fats that you can incorporate with those dipping sauces or dressing for your vegetables. A lot of the fat-free and low-fat dressings out there are full of sugar and sodium and are completely deprived on flavor.
5. Say Yes to Desert
Enjoy a fruit-based dessert at the end of a meal to satisfy your sweet tooth. Mix together some almond butter with fresh mashed berries and serve chilled.
6. Out of Sight, Out of Mind
Keep fruits and vegetables out on your counter or in the front of the fridge where you can see them and you’ll be likely to eat more servings throughout the day.
7. Get Out of Your Produce Rut
Variety is the key to a healthy diet; no single fruit or vegetable provides all of the nutrients you need to be healthy. Get out of your everyday shopping routine and pick out a new fruit and vegetable the next time you’re in the produce aisle. We like to have the kids pick a new fruit and vegetable because kids are more likely to eat something that they chose plus it encourages variety in their diet.
Want more reasons? Adding 5-7 fruits and vegetables (double what the average American eats daily), lowers the risk of a number of serious illnesses and health problems such as cancer, high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease.
Want to know which whole foods, vitamins and minerals are best for your body? Contact Complete Body Balance for an initial consultant and finally see the results you want.
Christopher Brady is owner and chief practitioner of Complete Body Balance Inc. As a certified Nutritionist, corrective exercise expert and wellness coach, Chris motivates individuals and corporations to achieve their healthiest and optimally balanced life. You can contact him at getCompleteBodyBalance.com and follow him on FaceBook