Healthy Vegetables

Healthy Vegetables are a primary source of vitamins and minerals. They constitute the third link in the nutrition pyramid. They provide health and nutrients and reduce the risk of certain diseases. The Nutrition Alphabet brings you the benefits of eating vegetables daily; learn to incorporate them into your diet.

Eating vegetables can be difficult for some people, but it is worth the effort to know all the benefits of consuming them. When you consume nutritious foods, the body appreciates them and reflects them in health. Also, if you feel like it, any ingredient is delicious.

Benefits of Consuming Healthy Vegetables

Benefits of Consuming Vegetables

The main benefits of including fruits and vegetables in our daily intake are:

  • They provide water
  • They are low in sodium, fat, and calories
  • They have high fibre content
  • They do not contain cholesterol
  • They are fresh and natural foods
  • Available all year round, changing the offer according to the season
  • You can include them in any meal
  • They help maintain a healthy weight and avoid becoming overweight
  • They help make better use of nutrients from other foods
  • They provide satiety after eating them.

Healthy Vegetables and Greens are they the same?

Vegetables are plant foods of different botanical species. Its edible parts can be the stem, leaves, flowers, fruits, roots, and bulbs. They are vegetables, for example, green beans, asparagus, and mushrooms. This group also includes peas and broad beans but does not include tubers, such as potatoes, sweet potatoes, or dried legumes.

The term ‘vegetable’ is commonly used to refer to all vegetables. But in reality, vegetables are a specific type of vegetables with their leaves as edible parts. They are named after the green colour of their leaves.

Great Nutritional Value

Vegetables are very nutritious and healthy foods that stand out, above all, for their high water content, vitamins, minerals, and fibre. They also contain bioactive substances that can help reduce the risk of chronic diseases. On the other hand, they include a little contribution of starch and sugar, which is why they are low-energy foods.

Vegetables are a source of minerals such as potassium, manganese, niacin, and vitamins such as C or K.

Some examples of plant foods that are an excellent source of vitamins:

  • Vitamin C: tomato, broccoli, pepper
  • Vitamin A: carrots, tomato, pumpkin
  • Vitamin D: sets.

Other vegetables, such as chard and spinach, also provide calcium and iron. Although it should be noted that they are of low absorption because they are of vegetable origin.

Tips to Make the Most of the Nutritional Value of Healthy Vegetables

During the process of preparing vegetables, the bioavailability of their nutrients can be altered. Laura González offers a list of simple recommendations to minimize the risk of this happening:

  • I always prefer fresh, raw, and unpeeled consumption.
  • Wash the whole vegetables first, then chop them.
  • Please do not leave them soaking for a long time.
  • Peel, grate, blend or cut before consuming them and not too long in advance.
  • Avoid storing them for many days in the refrigerator.
  • Avoid applying very high temperatures.

Reuse the water used to cook vegetables to make other dishes (soups, purees, sauces…), except for the water used to cook chard, beetroot, or spinach, as it has a high nitrate content.

5 Servings a Day, is it Possible?

Both the World Health Group (WHO) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) recommend a minimum consumption of 400g of fruit and vegetables per day (excluding potatoes and other tubers) to “improve health.” And reduce the risk of certain non-communicable diseases.”

This is equivalent to 3 servings of fruit and two servings of vegetables.

Regular consumption of these foods is associated with a lower risk of suffering from health problems such as diabetes, obesity, hypertension, or cardiovascular issues.

Tips to Eat More Healthy Vegetables

Tips to Eat More Healthy Vegetables

Although incorporating more vegetables into their daily diet is quite a challenge for many people, the nutritionist explains that there are many tricks to achieve it. These are some examples:

  • Incorporate them into our lunches and dinners as a first course or garnish.
  • Include them as an option to ‘snack,’ at snacks or between meals: celery or carrot sticks, endive leaves, cherry tomatoes, smoothies, juices…
  • Choose vegetable side dishes (cooked, raw, sautéed, grilled, or boiled) instead of the typical potato side dish.

Eating only a Salad, is it Healthy Vegetables?

Eating only a Salad, is it Healthy Vegetables?

Vegetables are basic foods in our diet and provide essential nutrients, but, by themselves, they can be insufficient since they are low in protein and fat and their energy intake is very low.

However, this is not a problem because the salad is a dish that admits a wide variety of ingredients. If we add a small amount of tuna, cheese, lean cold cuts, or even some cereal, pasta, or legume, we can turn our salad into a complete single dish.

Foods to Take Care of the Skin

Although there is no such thing as a healthy tan, this results from the action of melanin. You can sunbathe with skin protection and follow specific guidelines.

The professor at the International University of Valencia cites as examples:

  • Orange and orange-yellow fruits and vegetables such as carrots, loquats, or apricots
  • Green leafy foods like lettuce or spinach
  • Red foods like tomato or watermelon.

Also, vitamin C helps prevent photo-ageing. For this reason, the expert points out that “it is advisable to consume foods rich in this vitamin such as oranges, kiwis or strawberries to protect it.”

Is Spicy Good for the Heat?

Is Spicy Good for the Heat?
Food with many spices, hot ingredients, or chillies is usually consumed in desert or scorching areas. This is because these foods raise body temperature and stimulate blood circulation, which causes sweating and evaporation of sweat. In this way, the body manages to cool itself.

For the same reason, drinking seasonal water is more effective than cold water, as it balances body temperature. In this context, ice cream and cold drinks also lower body temperature, but they rise again quickly.

How many Servings of Fruits, Vegetables should We Consume?

When dieticians-nutritionists recommend that “you have to eat three pieces of fruit and 2 of vegetables a day”, it is not a maximum to consume. Instead, they are the portions we should take at least daily.

We can consume them in different formats:

  • Raw in salads or an Andalusian gazpacho.
  • Steamed, boiled, or accompanying stews.
  • Grilled or sautéed in the pan.
  • Crushed in creams or purées.
  • Cut into sticks to dip a hummus, vegetable pates, or guacamole.
  • Within elaborate dishes such as lasagna, vegetable cakes, dumplings, etc.
  • In sandwiches accompanying other foods rich in protein.
  • Use them in different sauces or dressings.
  • As part of a breakfast, lunch, or snack.
  • Even in some cakes or homemade desserts.

And so, long, etcetera. Who says that fruits and vegetables are bland? Is that he has not let his imagination fly to prepare them?

Conclusion

We should not only think that fruits and vegetables are consumed when looking for weight loss, much less that they are only included in bland diets. These food groups have multiple health benefits that we should not miss out on.

There are different ways to cook vegetables, various textures to try, and various possible combinations to make with other foods. Therefore, we advise you to innovate and never forget to include them on the plate daily for the whole family.

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