I read a short article last Friday that stated that Americans are consuming less fruits and veggies. Less. Despite all the campaigns, all the awareness, all the common sense, we're consuming less. This is one fairly easy and inexpensive way to ensure your health, it definitely costs less than high blood pressure medicine or a heart bypass. It benefits all areas of your life. Particularly Cancer prevention. If you knew that simply eating more fruit and vegetables would prevent your untimely and painful death why not do it? What's the hold up? I do not get it.
According to the research roughly 1/3 of Americans consumed fruit or fruit juice at least twice a day. 1/3, 33%, of all of us? We're a big Country-no pun intended-and only 33% are eating fruit at least twice a day? I love fruit, I have a huge sweet tooth, and fruit is my go to for satisfying that. There is always fruit in my boys' lunch boxes, sometimes two different kinds. And fruit is a star in my green smoothie.
Again, according to this research done by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 26% of Americans ate vegetables three or more times a day. Almost 1/4 of our population is eating their vegetables. How exactly do we expect our children to eat them if we're not? We're big salad eaters here, well I am, and since I cook the boys have to go along for the ride! Adding a nightly salad to the dinner table will increase your family's consumption and with relatively little effort on your part.
The other thing that jumped out, and alarmed, me was that according to last year's study the most popular form of fruit was orange juice and the most popular form of vegetable was potato. Now I love a good french fry as much as the next guy but potatoes do not supply your body with all it's needs! As for juice, honestly I hardly ever drink it. I had a glass of OJ last weekend for the first time since....well I don't know when...it was ok, not very satisfying though, I prefer the orange.
In the interest of increasing all our consumption I'll share one of the lunches from last week, conveniently packed in a lunch boxes to go container.
PB&J on Dave's Killer Bread. Diced watermelon. Fresh red bell pepper, carrot sticks and sugar peas. I'm not mean, there's dessert, homemade mini muffins, two oatmeal raisin and one cocoa muffin.
And another salad.
1/2 of an avocado
Dressed in a tangy chile lime dressing that I borrowed from the recipe for Jalepeno Lime Kale Slaw.
We can do better than 33% eating enough fruit and 26% eating enough vegetables. We can do better than the most popular form of fruit being served with a straw and the most popular veggie dipped in ketchup. It is not a mystery why we must do better. You need only look around at the mall to see what's happening to our Country. We must do better, not only for ourselves but for our children. Increasing your consumption of fruit and vegetables will make a difference in your health. You can make it easy. You can make it fun. You can make it tasty. Just make it, and eat it!