If the idea of eating more fruits and vegetables is as tough for you as running a marathon, you’re not alone. According to a recent CDC report, only 9% of adults attained the necessary amount of vegetables, and 12% fulfilled the fruit intake guidelines. Overall, 1 in 10 adults are hitting the required plant-based threshold. Dr. Deedra Mason’s latest video in her health series covers this, saying, “While there’s no evidence that a plant-based diet is best for 100% of the people, there is evidence that 100% of the people need more plants in their diet.”
So, How Much is Enough?
According to federal guidelines, daily fruit and vegetable intake recommendations vary by age and sex:
- Adult women require at least 1½ cups of fruit and 2½ cups of vegetables.
- Adult men need at least 2 cups of fruit and 3½ cups of vegetables.
The Health Benefits of Embracing Plants
Consider the crucial health benefits related to plant-based nutrition:
- Maintaining a healthy immune system.
- Help with weight management.
- Provision of essential nutrients.
Adding More Color to Your Plate
There are many practical ways to incorporate more fruits and vegetables into your daily routine:
- Prep your fruit and vegetables for your meals that week and freeze the surplus for future use.
- Opt for frozen or canned fruits and vegetables when shopping if that makes it easier and more cost-efficient.
- Increase your fruit intake by incorporating it as an afternoon snack — a small apple or banana is a great choice.
- Include more vegetables in your lunch, such as adding them to your sandwich, or packing carrot sticks or grape tomatoes as a snack.
- Take supplements to fill your nutrition gaps.
Learning to “put your best fork forward” and include more fruits and vegetables in your diet is a key step towards better health. For more tips on affordable and convenient ways to embrace a healthy diet, try visiting MyPlate. And don’t forget to try some of the recipes we have!
Key Takeaways for Better Health
The evidence underscores a pressing need for increased plant-based consumption. Whether you’re considering a fully plant-based diet or simply adding more fruits and vegetables to your meals, remember that every little bit counts towards a healthier you.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product(s) is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.