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Thursday, June 9, 2011

Tips to Eat More Vegetables

Eating vegetables provides essential nutrition for overall health, but they can also be low in calories which is good for weight loss.  This is why getting at least 3 cups of vegetables should be on your to-do list everyday!

When buying vegetables, buy fresh and in season if you can. These are usually cheaper and have the most flavor.  Easy steamers from the frozen section make meals simpler while still providing vegetables.  Buying pre-washed salad greens or pre-cut veggies adds to the convenience factor, but may cost more in the long run-so if you can buy in the most raw form (ie. lettuce head instead of chopped lettuce). 

Making vegetables more appealing will help you to get more in each day. For example, try using a low-fat salad dressing with raw veggies like broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, red or green peppers, etc.  Also you can add color to salads by shredding red cabbage, carrots, or using spinach leaves. 

At meals you can make vegetables the center of attention by making a vegetable soup or stir-fry and then complementing the main part of the meal with other foods.  Grilled vegetable kabobs are great for summer cook outs-try whole mushrooms, sliced peppers, and onions! When everyone else is ordering pizza, order a veggie pizza including olives, peppers, onions, tomatoes, mushrooms, banana peppers, etc to boost your veggie intake.  Salads help to incorporate more green leafy vegetables into your day-go light on the dressing, cheese, and meats to ensure that calories are still maintained at a lower level.

For the best nutritional values, buy "no salt added" canned vegetables and steer clear of veggies in sauces or high calorie seasonings that add fat or sodium.

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