EAT YOUR VEGGIES

(Health) Balance out the spritzers and sweets this season with hacks that up your veggie intake all day. It's probably not news to you that eating vegetables is a must for good health. But it can be a struggle to get enough of them. "I encourage people to aim for six half-cup servings per day," says Sharon Palmer, RDN, author of "Plant Powered for Life." "That means you have to get in at least a couple of servings at every mean." Here's some ways to sneak them in:

Boost your Breakfast
Mix sweet and savory - Combine shredded zucchini or finely chopped kale or spinach with fruit and stir it into oatmeal.
Have a Veggie intermezzo - Dice red bell pepper and cucumber and eat them as a palate cleanser after breakfast. "Many clients tell me it helps them cut off a sweet tooth," says Health's contributing nutrition editor, Cynthia Sass, RD.
Make a dip - stir finely chopped spinach and carrots into nut butter with cinnamon. Spread on toast or sliced fruit.

Load up at Lunch
Think beyond Salad - "Veggie stews and chili are other great lunch staples where you can fit in extra servings, says Sass.
Top your Toast - Layer avocado toast with ribbon carrots marinated in pesto, and arugula with a squeeze of lemon, suggest Sandy Bellatti, RD, a Las Vegas based nutritionist.
Snack Smarter - Always have a snack-able vegetable and hummus in the fridge, says Palmer. That way, if your lunch ever lacks veggies, you know you can still down a serving or two before dinner.

Top off at Dinner
Have Apps - Always preface the main course with a vegetable starter like a garden salad, vegan soup, or crudites, suggests Sass.
Stuff them Up - Make a vegetable the shell of a favorite meal for instance serve stir-fry in a pepper Portobello mushroom or zucchini.
Add a Sauce - Have leftover vegetables kicking around in the crisper? "Puree them with olive oil, garlic, and herbs, and you can use them as a sauce for just about anything, like spiralized zucchini, white beans, or fish," says Sass.

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