Green and Supreme: Reasons to Love Vegetables
Put the power of produce on your plate
Learning to Love Veggies
Despite their status as nutrition superheroes, vegetables rarely find
themselves on personal favorite lists. Some adults still shun vegetables,
setting a less-than-perfect example for children around the table while missing
out on the health benefits for themselves.
The WebMD Weight Loss Clinic recommends aiming for five servings daily. If
you have trouble fitting in that many, try some of these suggestions -- or come
up with your own creative solutions:
- Add sliced tomatoes, lettuce, sprouts, sliced red peppers, or shredded
carrots to sandwiches.
- Munch pickles, jicama, baby carrots, celery, or grape tomatoes as
- Drink vegetable juice.
- Slip a variety of vegetables into salads, soups, stews, tomato sauce, and
- Enjoy salads before meals. When you start off with a large, low-calorie
green salad, you may end up eating fewer total calories during the meal,
according to research.
- Roast veggies with a little olive oil for an interesting variation in
- Try grilled vegetables, which are delicious alone or added to pasta
- Add nutrition to breads and muffins with shredded vegetables such as
zucchini or carrots.
- Experiment with new vegetables to add variety to your repertoire.
- Use leaves of dark lettuce instead of bread to hold sandwich or burrito
Raw vs. Cooked
Raw vegetables are high in fiber and low in fat and calories. And vegetables
that can be eaten raw retain the maximum amount of nutrients.
Cooking vegetables kills bacteria, renders certain vegetables digestible,
enhances taste, texture, and aroma -- and, in the process, loses some of the
vitamins and minerals.
To retain the most nutrients, cook your vegetables in the least amount of
water and for the shortest period of time possible. Microwaving is one of the
best methods, as it's quick and requires little to no water.
Before you start chopping or cooking, it's important to properly prepare
your produce. Along with all those nutrients come some risky residues that need
to be washed away. So carefully wash all your vegetables -- scrubbing them or
washing them with a forceful stream of water or a bottled vegetable wash -- to
remove bacteria and any chemical residues from the outer layer.