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whole foods
fruits vegetables
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lemon pepper
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apple a day
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nutritional value
green beans
fruit juice
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Are You Eating Enough Whole Foods
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Are You Eating Enough Whole Foods

Getting More Whole Foods Into Your Daily Diet

Whole foods should be an everyday staple in our diets – fruits, vegetables, whole grains. It can be hard at first to start changing your diet by eating whole foods, but if you make a decision to change one thing at a time, it will soon become a habit for you to start eating that way all the time. And an added benefit will be increased energy levels and weight loss.

Adding more fruits to your diet should be easy to do. We should have 2-4 servings of fruit each day. As the saying goes, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” Try adding fruit with your breakfast, lunch, and dinner. You might even want to do a fruit salad as a mid-day snack instead of going to the vending machine and getting that candy bar or bag of chips. It is my opinion that your fruit should be fresh and organically grown to get the best nutritional value; but you can do frozen, dried or canned if fresh is not always available; also, having a glass of 100% fruit juice counts as a serving of fruit. And remember when buying anything in a can or jar, make sure to read your label for any added ingredients such as sodium or preservatives.

Next, we should incorporate more vegetables into our daily diet – at least 2-3 servings a day. Vegetables can be raw or cooked, but do not overcook your vegetables as you will lose much of their nutritional value. I have started to stir fry a lot of my vegetables (such as zucchini, squash, spinach, cabbage, onions, green beans) in a wok with a little olive oil and some seasoning like lemon pepper and garlic. It does not take them long to cook and my children like vegetables cooked this way. I like having a good salad with my lunch or dinner which is a good way to at least get in 2 servings of vegetables. You can also have a glass of 100% vegetable juice to count as a serving.

Then we need to add more whole grains to our daily diet. We should have a total of 5-8 servings of grains daily depending on your age; but of these 5-8 servings, 3-4 servings should be whole grains where a serving is equivalent to one ounce; so half of your daily grain intake must come from whole grains. Be sure to read your label to see if the item was made from whole grains. Some examples of whole grain foods are brown rice, oatmeal, popcorn, rolled oats, wild rice, whole wheat pasta, whole wheat bread, and whole grain barley just to name a few.

And in balancing our diet, let’s not forget to add in some protein (5-6 ounces daily for teens and adults) and dairy (3 servings daily where a serving is equivalent to 1 cup). As I have said, I believe fresh is the best way to go in eating more fruits and vegetables. To help me in accomplishing this task, I have started to make fresh fruit and vegetable smoothies with some whole grain goodness, protein, and sometimes dairy added in. This is another way to help you to begin enhancing and maximizing your health.


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