Walking Guide

How to Eat 5 Fruits & Veggies Each Day

"Eat your fruits and vegetables." We've heard it all of our lives. If only it were so simple.

Our bodies crave fruits and vegetables more than just about any other food because we tend to get far fewer of them than we need. We often think we'd survive just fine on 2-3 servings a day – or less. But the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the USDA both recommend at least 5 servings per day! What you’re missing could be the difference between just surviving and all out thriving.

With just a little thought and a tiny bit of effort in snack preparation, you can make these nutritious foods more convenient and accessible.

Tips and Tricks
  • Add fruit to your cereal, oatmeal, waffles or pancakes at breakfast.
  • Create your own yogurt flavors with plain yogurt and different combinations of fresh fruit.
  • Snack on raw vegetables or fruits instead of chips or pretzels. Keep sugar snap peas, raisins or carrot sticks in your car, your office or your backpack.
  • Use chunky salsa instead of thick, creamy snack dips.
  • Drink 100% juice instead of addictive coffee, tea, or soda.
  • Going out to lunch? Take a trip to the grocery salad bar. Use lots of dark green leaves and other vegetables instead of piling on all of the extras like eggs, bacon and cheese.
  • Add frozen veggies to any pasta dish. It's an easy way to get in another serving of the good stuff.
  • Keep fruits and vegetables in line of sight. Grapes, oranges, bananas, and apples make a colorful bowl arrangement on the table. If you see them, you will eat them.
  • Dried fruit is just as portable as potato chips -- and less messy. It tastes especially good when added to basic trail mix.
  • When cooking vegetables, makes 2-3 times more than you need and immdiately store the extra away for tomorrow. It'll save you time later on.
  • Add your own beans and vegetables (tomatoes, spinach, peppers, cabbage) to canned and quick-serve soups.
  • If you must have pizza, load on extra veggies and pineapple instead of fatty meats and extra cheese.
  • Try berries, melons or dates for a naturally sweet dessert rather than the usual candy bar, cookie, or ice cream sandwich.
  • Frozen fruit and veggies are nearly as healthy as the fresh stuff, and only take minutes to prepare.
  • Combine fruit with your main meal courses. Raisins, apples and tangerine slices add sweet, crunchy variety to a salad. Apples complement pork, pineapple is great with fish, and orange slices are perfect with chicken.
Besides being packed full of nutrients, fruits and vegetables can also be quite filling. They may even ward off any empty calorie snacking that might follow! Don’t be discouraged by the recommended 5 servings a day. The guide below shows that one serving is less than what you might think.

One serving equals:
1 medium piece of fruit
1/2 cup fruit (raw, canned, or frozen)
1/2 cup cooked vegetables (canned or frozen)
1 cup raw vegetables
1/4 cup dried fruit
4-6 oz. of 100% juice (serving size depends on the type of juice)
1/2 cup cooked peas or beans
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Member Comments

Absolutely Love my fruits and veggies Report
Cracked me up to see on the suggested list of how to add more veggies was when having a pizza to load it up with veggies and pineapple. I LOVE my pizza that way. Drives husband crazy so I add double fruit and sit near him to eat it! My bad! Report
Action may not always bring happiness, but there is no happiness without action. - William James ~ 3/6/18 Report
Love my freggies Report
Thank you Report
As a steak and potato person, it always bothers me that these articles don't include potatoes! I am not much of a snacker, and fruits on the counter stay there until they attract the fruit flies, but not me. But they are great for losing weight because half a cup of just about any fruit or veg and I lose interest in eating. And after a few days I lose any appetite and can keep going until I am down the needed amount. Report
I like to make smoothies and include my fruits and veggies in them. Report
Didn't eat enough veggies today Report
I find I can even ignore the fruit bowl but if I cut it up and leave it on the counter, same with say a carrot (already washed), I'm way more likely to grab it first. Report
I don't have babies anymore but I still buy baby food...pureed carrots and sweet potatoes are great to throw into pasta sauce, meatloaf, chili, etc. I'm getting extra veggies into me and my kids, and they're none the wiser! It's cheaper to puree your own, but I use coupons and sales to stock up because it's so much more convenient. Report
So easy to sauté veggies and make a scrambled egg. Report
I love V8 juice as it's easy to consume. No timely prep and I love the taste. It's rich and filling. It's also a comfort food for me as when I was a little girl and recovering from any sort of illness my mom would give us kids toast and V8 juice instead of 7 up and soda crackers. Not sure why she chose this but I am really glad she did :) Report
For people who really have trouble getting fruits & veggies in 100 % fruit juice is ok I guess, but really not the best option. It’s basically glorified sugar water. Much better to actually eat the fruit to get fibre also Report
We all need fruits and veggies. Report
Walking Guide

About The Author

Laura Bofinger
Laura Bofinger
As a freelance writer, Laura uncovers some kind of inspiration every day when she writes about health and fitness.
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