One thing I have been wanting to do more of lately for my health is to eat more veggies.
Veggies provide so much goodness but unfortunately, when I get lazy they can often be the first food group to go.
Yet the benefits to eating your veggies is undeniable people! From the vitamins to the fibers and from the low caloric density to the phytochemicals. Veggies do it all.
When it comes to dietary recommendations, the Canadian Food Guide has the right idea with suggesting that the majority of your plate be filled with fruit & veggies. The more veggies we fill our plate with, the more we fill ourselves up with nutrient-dense food rather than feeling stuffed from overeating mounds of carbs or a massive piece of protein.
Don't get me wrong, complex carbs and protein are a really important part of a healthy plate. But research is showing great benefits to our bodies and the environment if we start to make veggies the stars of our plate instead.
So in hopes of helping all of you fill your plates with more veggies too, here are 5 simple tips on how to add more veggies into your day!
Adding spinach to my smoothies has honestly been a game-changer for me.
Whether it is a mid-day snack or on the run out the door in the morning, I have found smoothies to be a great addition to my daily routine.
And although I was skeptical at first, adding spinach to my smoothies has turned out to be such a great idea! Adding spinach helps add substance to the smoothie via a lower-caloric dense food and allows me to add 1-2 more servings of veggies to my day.And I promise, I don’t even notice the taste!
So if you can deal with every smoothie being this vibrant colour of green, this is a sure way to introduce more leafy greens to your diet.
Whether it is a bowl of pasta, a buddha bowl, a salad, or heck a good ol' taco, if you are questioning if you can add more veggies, the answer is always yes.
Personally, I have always been one to load up my plate. But lately, I have been intentionally adding more veggies to top up my meals with even more nutrients (and get those veggie servings in).
Here are a couple of ways you can spice up your bowls with some more veggies:
One of the most traditional ways of structuring a meal is the classic meat, veggie & starch ( rice or potato). One I am sure you are all familiar with, as this was a common theme in a lot of North American households for years! And I won’t lie, it was a structure I often (and sometimes still) fell back on when creating my meals.
But one of the easiest ways to get more greens and veggies into your meals is to replace that starchy carb with a green one!
Two ways I like to do this are as follows:
Potatoes and rice can be a good source of carbs in your diet but changing it up sometimes can be a simple and easy way to make sure you are getting enough veggies in your day.
Let's be honest, if we had the choice of grabbing a veggie snack over the quick grab granola bar is not usually the choice we make.
But the more accessible things are the way more likely you are to grab them.
Cutting up some cucumbers and peppers for a couple of days a week and making a favourite dipping sauce ( like a Low-FODMAP Tzatziki) can be a great way to make a healthier snack more accessible. As well as taking every opportunity to increase your vegetable servings for the day.
Before trying it out for myself, I always thought that making soup was such a task to take on in the kitchen.
But it turns out making a soup can actually be one of the easiest meals that you make in the week. Whether it is in an instapot, crockpot, or good ol' soup cauldron on the stove, it often just comes down to pouring all the ingredients in and letting it simmer for hours on it's own!
Soups are also a great way to increase your veggie intake! You can add so many veggies to a soup, and outside of prepping them for the pot, it can be a super easy task for your Sunday meal prep.
These two are some of the low-FODMAP soups I have tackled that have turned out great!
Keep in mind that these strategies that I have developed over the years have worked well for me. We are all individuals and you will find that not all strategies, tricks, and tips will work for you. When it comes to nutrition, things can get confusing and it really is an endless journey of learning. My hope is just that I can make it a little bit less bumpy for you!
If you have any specific medical issues or questions please reach out to a local health professional for help. It is best not to use "Dr. Google" to find a diagnosis. And as always, what I share here at Making Lemonade is for information only, and should not be considered a substitute for medical advice.
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