5+ Per Day-Go easy on the Fruit
We all know we should eat more fresh produce, but for those of you not yet in the know, the original plan for launching what is now known as the "5+ a Day" campaign was supposed to be the "9 or 10 Per Day" campaign. The FDA quashed this as too daunting for the average American to get their head around, so they dumbed it down to 5+ a Day.
With that said, the original panel also emphasised that, with the exception of rapidly growing children and convalescing adults, the emphasis of the campaign should be on non-starchy vegetables rather than starchy vegetables and sugary fruit. This was determined to be the optimal intake of plant matter for longer, leaner and healthier living. Fibrous veggies include 'fruits' such as tomatoes, zucchini and bell peppers, plus true vegetables such as onions, broccoli, coriander and spinach (to name just a very few). These vegetables are high in vitamins, minerals and anti-oxidants with a minimum of calorie intake. Getting the same amount of nutrients from fruits more than quadruples the calorie intake.
For instance: good size serving of fresh salsa contains a whopping 150% of your daily vitamin A requirements, 280% of your vitamin C requirements, almost NO sodium, and 800mg of potassium. All this for a mere 90 calories, and it even supplies 7% of your minimum protein requirments. For the same calories you could eat one orange, and get 100% of your minimum vitamin C requirements, but little else (including a total lack of fiber). Or you could eat an apple and get very little other than 90 calories from sugars and a few grams of fiber.
So eat lots and lots of fresh non-starchy veggies if weight control with good nutrition is high on your list of priorities. Pass on the sugary fruits, potaotes, corn, peas, etc...and see how much better you look and feel in just a short time.