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Monday, 16 December 2019

Simple Ways You Can Increase Your Daily Vegetable Intake

Lara Rondinelli, RD, LDN, CDE, writes;
“Eat more vegetables.”

“Make sure half your plate is full of veggies.”

“Snack on low carb vegetables.”

These suggestions probably sound familiar, but the truth is, many people aren’t eating enough vegetables on a daily basis.

Most vegetables are very low carb, and therefore have little impact on blood sugar. They also provide a number of health benefits because they are high in fibre and packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

You should aim to fill half your plate with a colourful variety of fibre-rich, low carbohydrate vegetables.

Why aren’t people eating enough vegetables?
If you’re struggling to get enough veggies on your plate, here are some questions to help you figure out what you may be doing wrong:-

Do you tend to choose processed snacks instead of vegetables?
Do you go for some days without eating any vegetables at all?
Do you like vegetables but forget to eat them?
Are you bored with vegetables and want to know different ways to work them into your diet?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, read on. Here are some simple tips to help you increase your veggie intake.

Pick one to try today and you’ll see how easy — and delicious — it can be to add more vegetables to your diet.

Have veggies for breakfast

Many people don’t eat vegetables for breakfast, but it can be a great time to add more to your daily intake. 

Choose one or more of these vegetables to add to your scrambled eggs or omelette: onions, spinach, tomatoes, green peppers, courgette/zucchini or mushrooms. 

You can also make mini egg and vegetable quiches in muffin tins and freeze them for a quick breakfast during the week. 

Double Up
If a little is good, more is better. This is definitely true when it comes to low carb vegetables. Try doubling your portion size. If you are making a stir-fry, make vegetables the main course of the dish. 

If you usually add one carrot and one onion to your baked chicken, double or triple that and add other veggies as well. If you choose to eat foods like pizza, add extra toppings such as spinach, tomatoes, mushrooms, or green peppers. 

Try a Veggie Smoothie
This may not be a typical way to eat your veggies, but you might be surprised at the great taste. Get creative and blend fruits and vegetables such as spinach, kale, frozen blueberries, or half a banana, with a little milk. 

It’s delicious, refreshing, and a healthy way to start the day. These smoothies also make a great snack for both kids and adults. 

Just remember to count the carbs and make sure to choose low carb fruits and vegetables to toss into the blender. 

Roast It
Roasting brings out the natural flavour of vegetables, making it one of the easiest and tastiest ways to cook them. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray, toss the veggies of your choice, such as aubergine/eggplant, asparagus, courgette/zucchini, peppers, Brussels sprouts, or cauliflower, with a little olive oil, and roast in the oven at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes, until tender. 

You can also sprinkle with Parmesan cheese if desired.

Snack on Veggies
Many people reach for unhealthy snacks such as chips, cookies, granola bars, or whatever the vending machine has to offer. Veggies are the forgotten snack.

Grape tomatoes, cucumber slices, broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, and green peppers taste great served with hummus or guacamole.

If it’s almost time for dinner and you are still hungry, have some veggies with hummus. Not only will you satisfy your hunger, but you’ll also be getting a serving of vegetables before dinner. 

Sneak in Veggies
If you aren’t a huge fan of vegetables, you can find creative ways to sneak more into a meal. This one works well for anyone who isn’t a huge fan of vegetables.

Finely dice carrots, courgette/zucchini, and peppers and add to meatballs or meatloaf. Don’t ever make another tomato-based pasta sauce without adding vegetables, such as onion, green peppers, carrots, or aubergine/eggplant, to the sauce.

Don’t have time for dicing and chopping vegetables? Add a whole-bag of frozen Italian vegetables to the sauce. Just sauté the vegetables first and then add to the sauce. Use this same tip for soups, chili, and stews as well.

Order Vegetables When Eating Out
Eating at restaurants offers many challenges, but you can make things easier by ordering vegetables when eating out.

Start your meal with a salad and order a side of vegetables with your entrée. Most restaurants have plenty of vegetables to choose from, whether it’s steamed broccoli, mixed vegetables, cooked spinach, or asparagus.

Making a conscious effort to swap veggies for fries or onion rings at restaurants, it can help lower the total carbs and calories of your meal.

Eat More Salad
Salad can be a great side dish or satisfying meal on its own. You can load salads up with vegetables and pack them with protein. Experiment with different types of lettuce, spinach, and veggies. Add some bold flavour with cheese, almonds, sunflower seeds, or avocado. 

NOTE: The information is not intended to be a replacement or substitute for consultation with a qualified medical professional or for professional medical advice related to diabetes or another medical condition. Please contact your physician or medical professional with any questions and concerns about your medical condition

The above from article here the end of the day you can't go wrong with eating more vegetables. I do like roasting vegetables.

Here’s one good way to roast vegetables

Peel if needed, then cut all the vegetables into pieces that are basically the same size so they’ll cook at the same rate. Group the vegetables by texture and/or type, so that shorter cooking veggies are on one sheet pan and longer cooking veggies are on another. For example, root vegetables, squash and potatoes (if you eat them) can be grouped together, and cauliflower, broccoli and Brussels sprouts can be grouped together, and onions, courgettes/zucchini and bell peppers can be grouped together.

Coat the vegetables generously with avocado oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. You could also use fresh rosemary, but any herbs that suit you.

Spread the vegetables out evenly in one layer on a sheet pan, with a little room to spare. Don’t overcrowd the sheet pan. For easier clean-up, line the sheet pan with parchment paper first... I find this very helpful!

Roast in the oven at 425º F : 220º C : gas mark 7 - hot, for 20 to 45 minutes, depending on the type of vegetable. Vegetables are done when they can be easily pierced with a fork and are lightly browned on the edges.

Mix the vegetables only once or twice while they roast. Use a rimmed baking sheet, so the veggies don’t fall off the pan when you mix them.

Enjoy your veggies!

Readers, we bring a variety of articles, studies etc. plus recent news/views and recipe ideas to this blog, we hope something for everyone to read and enjoy. Please note, not all may be suitable for you. If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues these must always be taken into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

All the best Jan


Tom said... they say, strive for five!

CJ Kennedy said...

Those were all great suggestions. I never thought of tossing veg into scrambled eggs for breakfast.

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

Wonderful post to get people to eat more veggies. When I go somewhere, and people realize I'm a vegetarian, they serve me pasta. If only they read this, they would know that vegetarians eat all kinds of great meals that don't revolve around meat! Thanks for this post, Jan.

Jo said...

Some good tips there. I love my veggies.

Elephant's Child said...

I love my vegies, but my partner does not. He has to be cajoled/bribed/tricked into eating them.

Valerie-Jael said...

I love veggies in all forms. Valerie

L said...

You really do keep us aware of eating well, such good advice,

Susan Kane said...

I love vegetables of all sorts, so this is perfect. Thanks for all the info.

Plus I love your recipes. Have copied pasted and have them in my file!

DVArtist said...

Veggies, Veggies, Veggies that is me. I snack on them all day. My favorite is humus and veggies. The only way I don't like them is roasted. They just don't taste good to me. I do make veggie and fruit smoothies too.

DeniseinVA said...

Great tips on how to get more veggies in the diet. We do our best but this will definitely be a big help. Thank you and have a great week :)

happyone said...

Thanks for all those great suggestions. I'm one that needs to eat more veggies.

Christine said...

Love this veggie post!

The Joy of Home with Martha Ellen said...

Great post, Jan! We love veggies at our home. Roasting is a favorite for us, particularly in the winter.

Conniecrafter said...

Great ideas to add more vegetables, I do need to have more in my diet

Carla from The River said...

I liked the tips. Having veggies for breakfast is one I need to do more of.

peppylady (Dora) said...

We all could use increae in vegetables

Thickethouse.wordpress said...

I love vegetables but haven't thought of having them for breakfast so much! Thank you, Jan!

Margaret D said...

Good article.
Love my veggies.

aussie aNNie said...

Delish post, love the suggestions. Any good suggestions for glazing ham for
Christmas or is that a NO NO due to fat? :)

Iris Flavia said...

Oh, I love veggies, but I admit, at times - esp on cold days - raw veggies I skip.
Your Brussels Sprouts soup will be on here again :-) Best receipe ever! (So far)

Victor S E Moubarak said...

I have been told that one portion of fruit or vegetables is as much as you can hold in the palm of your hand. So I held a whole water melon!

What do you think?

God bless.

eileeninmd said...


I love most veggies, great post and info. I wish my hubby loved more veggies.
Thanks for sharing! Enjoy your day, have a good week ahead.

Sherry said...

Thanks for the post. I love my veggies! Can't wait to dig into the site better.

Lowcarb team member said...

Hello everyone, many thanks for your comments so far, they are always appreciated.

Aussie aNNie said...
Delish post, love the suggestions. Any good suggestions for glazing ham for
Christmas or is that a NO NO due to fat? :)

Hi there, no worries with a nice LCHF glazed ham in my menu plans! This one from Diet Doctor site for example Apricot and mustard glazed ham, see details here

Victor S E Moubarak said...
I have been told that one portion of fruit or vegetables is as much as you can hold in the palm of your hand. So I held a whole water melon!

What do you think?

God bless

Ha Ha Ha :)
Although we love a good variety of vegetables with each meal, there is a great water melon pizza recipe which includes a few more low carb fruits, see it here

Wishing all readers a happy day, and enjoy the rest of the week too.

All the best Jan

Laurel Wood said...

Thank you for the wonderful tips. I love almost any vegetable.
Thank you for your kind comment. I wish you and yours a Merry Christmas.

Debbie said...

great information!! i do not enjoy cooked vegetables...but i love them fresh and uncooked. i think i get enough, i really enjoy most!!

pam nash said...

Great suggestions - thanks. I love veggies but sometimes just don't make the effort I should.

Chatty Crone said...

I am going to try to roast veggies - you are right - I don't eat enough.

Divers and Sundry said...

Great ideas! I love veggies in eggs, and I've been surprised at how easy it is to roast them. Thx!

Martha said...

We eat a lot of vegetables every day in our home. Love them!

dellgirl said...

Thanks for sharing this information and these tips on Ways to Increase our Daily Vegetable Intake. It’s very helpful! I learned a lot here.

I wish you well, my friend!

baili said...

what an incredibly delightful post Jan
thank goodness i veggies because i am fan of veggies
liked the question part most ,yes sometimes we skip eating veggies because we forget to do so
i enjoyed the sharing so much

Bob Bushell said...

Yummy, thanks for info.

Magic Love Crow said...

I always feel better when I eat more vegetables!! I have to admit, I should eat more!

This N That said...

I like veggies but usually only get them when I eat out...They are expensive and don't keep well..I don't go to the grocery store often enough..I also don't cook..How's that for excuses?? Salad looks good..Happy New Year..