Five Ways to Get Five a Day: Tips to Integrate Your Daily Produce

produce, theurbanrealistWritten By Deborah Myers

Five Ways to Get Five a Day: Tips and Tricks to Integrate Your Daily Produce
FIVE apples a day keep the doctor away? Wow. That standard sounds like a bit much to the average American, especially the average BUSY American, which is, well, ALL of us.
The concept in getting five cups of produce a day isn’t that you need five doses of one recurrent fruit or vegetable. It’s that this estimated amount should allow you the variation of necessary nutrients our bodies need to function and work at their optimum capacity.
If you’re the kind of guy or gal who craves order, then this method might be handy for those who delight in their measurements:
One cup will typically include one decently sized fruit or vegetable, like a banana, apple, or potato. When it comes to smaller bites, such as strawberries, baby carrots, and broccoli florets, one cup will range from an approximate serving of 8-12 pieces.
If you’re the free spirit type, simply being mindful of incorporating both fruits and vegetables into your dishes is always the best and most doable way to go. Here are FIVE handy methods to utilize in getting your essential five servings a day:
1). Shop local.
Shopping weekly at your local farmer’s market and stocking up on fruits and vegetables not only provides YOU with appealing, appetizing, fresh fruits and vegetables, but it supports your local farmers and is incredibly affordable. Additionally, the visual of shopping frequently gets the creative juices flowing on how you can incorporate these farm fresh ingredients into your meals, AND, as always, when it comes to produce, the fresher  the better!
2). Add one.
We all have our frequent, and not-so-frequent, fruit and veggie go-to’s. It’s OK to have a core supply of your favorite produce items, but every time you visit the market, try to take a step out of your comfort zone. Add something to your shopping basket you’ve never tried before, haven’t tried for a while, or even used to hate! You may find, that when prepared properly, your taste buds don’t loathe the same “yucky” vegetables the same way they did during your childhood. Try new foods, try new recipes! Evolution is a major key to your nutritional success!
3). Think “Atop”.
Pairing proteins and complex carbohydrates like beans and rice “atop” vegetables is a great way to combine flavors and constantly incorporate your veggie needs. This works for fruits as well! Think fresh fruits “atop” oats, Greek yogurt, and nuts… the possibilities are endless, and you will ALWAYS find a way to make new, refreshing, tasty combinations. It really NEVER gets boring when we don’t “stick to what we know”.
4). Smooth Operations.
Embrace the smoothie. Thrown in a blender with a splash of your favorite milk preference, or even just ice, tons of fruit and vegetable combinations make a delicious power snack, dessert, or even a sweet addition to your meal. Smoothie joints aren’t the only places that can profit from this amazing secret! You can make equally delicious, and even more nutritious smoothies in your own home, save yourself the cash, and know your body is benefitting!
5). Keep an open palate.
Keep an open palate, AND an open mind. You’ll never discover new and delicious ways of combining fruits and vegetables together, with your favorite main dishes, or into fun and unexpected recipes until you TRY it. Instead of worrying about whether or not you’ll like something new, think about all the tastes you can awaken if you DO like something new! The craft of creativity builds upon trial and error, so don’t be afraid to make mistakes, and don’t be afraid to expand your palatable horizons! There’s a wide, wide world of nature’s deliciousness awaiting you; Go discover!

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