We are always told we need to eat more vegetables, but let’s have a look at why.
Vegetables are full of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fibre which are vital components in keeping us healthy and nourished. They are low in calories, have no cholesterol and are one of the best foods to keep our organs healthy and our immune system ‘topped up.’ Their high fibre content and low calorie count helps keep us fuller for longer, providing a great way to manage our weight.
They not only enable our digestive system to work properly, helping to eliminate toxins, but their nutrient content also supports our skeletal system and helps to regulate our blood pressure.
Research has found further health benefits to include:
- Reducing the risk of stroke or cardiovascular disease
- Reducing type 2 diabetes risk
- Protecting against certain cancers
- Reducing inflammation in the body
- Reducing the risk of developing kidney stones
The range of vegetables is endless, they come in all different colours, shapes and sizes.
To make the most of the benefits of vegetables, we need to be eating a whole range and not just sticking to the same ones that we know. The aim is to eat the rainbow every day! We must choose a variety of vegetables that are different colours – green, yellow, red, purple, orange and white.
Aim to push yourself out of your comfort zone and add in a different type of vegetable that you don’t normally eat. Let’s mix it up and take advantage of all of their health benefits! Whether it is adding spinach, beetroot, broccoli, sweet potatoes, peppers, aubergines, be creative with your plates and add some colour!
If you would like to look further into the types of vegetables and their specific benefits, click here for an A-Z list.
Hung HC, et al. (2004) Fruit and vegetable intake and risk of major chronic disease. Available at: https://academic.oup.com/jnci/article/96/21/1577/2521033
Slavin J L, Lloyd B (2012) Health Benefits of Fruits and Vegetables. Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3649719/
Wang X, et al. (2014) Fruit and vegetable consumption and mortality from all causes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer: systematic review and dose-response meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies. Available at: https://www.bmj.com/content/349/bmj.g4490.full.pdf+html
Woollams C. (2015) The Rainbow Diet. 4th ed. Canceractive.