The latest research is saying that if we want the maximum protection against heart disease, cancer and early death then we need to double the amount of fruit and vegetables we eat. The research analysed 95 different studies to come up with their conclusions.
When I trained as a nutritional therapist in the 1980’s we were taught that 5 portions of fruit and vegetables was insufficient for good health. Since then I have eaten more and tried to include lots in the recipes I create and I always encouraged my clients to major on vegetables.
In countries where research has been done into the longevity of the people their diets all contain lots of vegetables. They are not just used as an accompaniment to meals but are an integral part of the meal. Rather than thinking about the savoury content of our meals and adding vegetables as a side dish we need to find ways to introduce more vegetables into the food we prepare and to include vegetables at more meals per day.
At the moment it is necessary to prepare more meals from scratch in order to do this, as ready prepared food never contains sufficient vegetables. If you can include things like home-made soup, a salad and a good selection of vegetables with your evening meal it’s easy to find yourself eating 8 portions of vegetables per day. Add a couple of pieces of fruit (I don’t like to overeat fruit because of its sugar content) for snacks, puddings or with meals and you are suddenly eating enough to improve your health and longevity.