Healthy Living

Do I Really Need My Vegetables?

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The answer- YES!
Of course you do!

Maybe you were the kid that LOVED eating their vegetables- or maybe you were the last one at the dinner table picking at them because you hated them. But no matter how you feel about vegetables- you NEED them!

Now, admittedly not all vegetables are as appealing as others- but just because you don’t like 1 or 2, doesn’t mean you can’t LOVE some others!

They come in all shapes, sizes and flavors!
From cherry tomatoes, to cucumber, to eggplant, to potatoes- the variety is just never ending.

Vegetables are a great snack AND meal option. Not only are they super low in calories but they are a quick and natural way to provide us with a variety of essential vitamins and minerals. Vegetables are high in calcium, fiber, iron, magnesium, potassium, vitamin A and C- just to name a few! 

Research consistently shows that people who eat at least 5 servings of vegetables a day have the lowest risk of many fatal health complications.

Let’s take a closer look at some vegetables and the mighty punch they pack

Let’s start with a fan favorite: Carrots

Carrots are tasty no matter how they are consumed. Cooked or raw with some of your favorite dip- they are a versatile and quick way to fill yourself with some key nutrients. One serving of carrots (half a cup) contains up to 73% of your recommended daily intake of Vitamin A (in the form of beta carotene) which is vital for healthy eyesight, and getting enough of this nutrient may help prevent vision loss. Carrots also have an ample amount of antioxidants which promote a healthier heart and can lower the risk of health issues while their Vitamin C content can help boost your immune system.

Spinach- not just for Popeye!

Spinach is another great vegetable that can be consumed raw or cooked. Toss some raw spinach in your salad or add some cooked spinach to your dinner- either way you will be giving your body a surprising amount of nutrition. Just 1 cup of uncooked spinach has 30 milligrams (mg) of calcium, 24 mg of magnesium and 167 mg of potassium.  It also contains vitamin K, fiber, beta carotene, phosphorus, and thiamine- all of which work to provide your body with benefits such as bone health, digestive support and blood sugar management.

It’s a Fruit, it’s a Vegetable- It’s a Tomato!

Yes we know tomatoes are technically a fruit, BUT most people treat them like vegetables and are most often used in veggie dishes. A single tomato can provide about 40% of the daily recommended minimum of vitamin C.

They also contain high amounts of Vitamin A-which supports vision and your immune system. Vitamin K-which is good for your bones, and Potassium- an important nutrient for heart function and maintaining a healthy blood pressure.

Now onto arguably the BEST VEGGIE out there- the potato.

So versatile-mash them, bake them, turn them into french fries- so many options! Not to mention DELICIOUS options. Potatoes contain iron, vitamin C, vitamin B6 and potassium. In fact- a medium 5.3 oz skin on potato has 620 mg of potassium per serving, which is 15% of the daily value and more than a medium-sized banana! They are also a good source of antioxidants- such as flavonoids, carotenoids and phenolic acids. All of which provide your body with fuel it needs to take on the day ahead!

Now knowing these nutritional facts about just 4 different vegetables has to have you somewhat intrigued right? These are 4 tasty- versatile veggies that can be made and consumed in so many yummy ways- and provide your body with ample nutrition.

Try to incorporate a veggie with each meal if you can. Even something small-remember- just because they are small doesn’t mean they aren’t mighty!


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