Health & Wellness

Sneak Fruits and Vegetables into Your Diet


Health experts often promote diets that include at least five fruit and vegetable servings per day. But even some of the most health conscious eaters are struggling to reach this target. Although most of us know fruits and veggies are low in calories while high in vitamins, minerals and fiber, the task of incorporating them into our daily diets continues to be a struggle.  Fruits and vegetables are linked to reducing risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, and even some cancers.

So how can we sneak fruits and veggies into our meals? Cotton Candy reached out to Leora Davis, a Registered Dietitian with Nutrition Energy, a private nutrition practice in New York City. Davis shows how, with minimal effort, you can add more fruits and vegetables into your diet with delicious, convenient foods that’ll add color, texture and flavor to every meal.

No. 1 Begin at breakfast.
Add sliced banana or berries to yogurt, cereal, or cottage cheese. If eating eggs, always add 1/2 cup of veggies.

No. 2 Add a little crunch.
Add lettuce, tomato, cucumber or onion to wraps and sandwiches. The extra crunch is juicy, delicious and worth the one minute prep time.

No. 3 Stop for snack time.

Make a habit of reaching for fruit or cut up vegetables between meals.

No. 4 Try nonperishable foods.
Try one serving of unsweetened applesauce or ¼ cup of dried fruit; both foods are ready in an instant and nonperishable.

No. 5 Always keep frozen vegetables available.
Frozen veggies are just as nutritious, fresh and can be ready in minutes.

No. 6 Consider frozen fruit.

Suck on frozen mango or peach cubes for a lasting and refreshing dessert.

No. 7 Take safety in salad.

There is always time to make a delicious salad. To make it even easier, buy bagged lettuce, shredded carrots, cabbage, cherry tomatoes, and toss them all in a bowl.

No. 8 Skip processed sugar.

Baked apples or pears with cinnamon make a sweet, healthy snack.  Bake in the oven or warm in the microwave.

No. 9 Think of a rainbow.
Keep a variety of colors as you choose your fruits and vegetables to ensure a variety of nutrients. If your plate is one color, you are missing out on more than just visual appeal.

No. 10 Be realistic.

Start by adding one additional serving of fruit or vegetables to your day, and increase slowly until you reach the recommended five to nine servings per day. Soon your body will begin to crave them, and your taste palette will change.

Written by: Leora Davis

Leora Davis, MS, RD is a Registered Dietitian at Nutrition Energy, a private nutrition practice in New York City. She specializes in helping both individuals and families improve their nutrition habits and health conditions while balancing the needs and preferences of each family member. She uses behavior modification strategies to help clients sneak exercise and healthy foods into their day.

Cotton Candy Magazine®