FIVE a day, easy or only for the clean eaters?

Five servings of fruits/veggies is the recommended guideline, five servings a day and we will all be healthy right?

Unfortunately it isn’t that simple, and I’m not sure it is realistic to follow every guideline set out, however I actually think FIVE servings of fruit or veggies isn’t enough. A few years ago I remember thinking that trying to get five servings a day was too difficult, I’d have to eat a lot more and I didn’t want to. I rarely ate fruit and settled for some sort of salad or vegetable at dinner, that was difficult enough. I was very misunderstood about what a serving looked like, and I  was reminded of this on Sunday.

I went to the grocery store and I had missed lunch (a quest bar is not lunch) and I decided to grab a fruit/veggie platter, it looked good and at £2 I thought it was totally worth the money. I sat down and opened the box and noticed it was labelled as a ‘5 a day snack pack’ and it served one. I looked at the box and thought ‘this is five a day?’, I realised that even now the quantity in the pack surprised me. It didn’t look like a lot sitting on the table, but in a lunch box it might look like a lot more.

Here is a picture of the snack pack. It has carrots, pineapple, grapes, melon and sugar snap peas!

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As I sat munching my way through the fresh food (I paired it with a cheddar babybel) I thought wow this would be super easy to have on hand at work, I could just buy a few and I’d get my FIVE a day without even thinking. I snack every day, but I have a tendency of snacking of sweet treats like dark chocolate, quest bars and strawberry crisps, I rarely snack on fresh fruit or veggies. You see I easily get TEN servings a day between lunch and dinner, so it doesn’t occur to me to snack on fresh food too.

I’m going to be totally honest here, if I had to prep something like this box ^^^ I wouldn’t bother, I don’t mind prepping salad and lunches but this would just be a lot of peeling, chopping and faffing! Sometimes lazy girl wins! 🙂

How do I manage to get more than FIVE servings a day?

They key is making my lunch and dinner salad/veggie focused, I build my meal around this, salads are not just a side dish you order when you are dieting. They can be an amazing, satiating meal – with health benefits built in! The first foods I add to my grocery list are salad items, I’ve been doing it long enough to know how much to buy so I don’t have waste.

It looks like this:

2 bags of iceberg lettuce

1 bag of spinach

1 bag of shredded cabbage

1 cucumber

1 pack of baby tomatoes

1 bag of radishes (they are a pain in the ass to slice!)

1 red onion

1 bag of grated carrot (lazy girl)

1 bag of broccoli florets

1 pack of strawberries

1/2 pack of blueberries

This is my fruit/vegetable base for my salad, I dump all of these into a mixing bowl and then put my ‘add-ins’ later, I have a range of textures and flavors, but they go together really well. I have a heaped serving of this at lunch and dinner, sometimes I will add steamed veggies at dinner too.

Is it a lot? Yes, but it keeps me feeling SSE and above all else, my mind and body feel great when I am feeding it good food. You can see how easy it is to incorporate more than FIVE servings per day, you just gotta get smarter.

Who know’s perhaps I will start snacking on the fresh stuff too?!

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