Saturday, July 28, 2007

HEALTHY EATING HELPS 2


MAKE VEGETABLES

AND FRUIT SERVINGS COUNT

Eat at least one dark green and one orange vegetable each day.

Dark green and orange vegetables are mentioned specifically because they are rich in folate and vitamin A, respectively. Eating these vegetables each day will ensure that people consume adequate amounts of these nutrients.

Dark green vegetables are important sources of folate. Examples include arugula, asparagus, broccoli, Brussels

sprouts, collards, fresh parsley, green peas, mustard greens, romaine lettuce and spinach.

Orange vegetables are rich in carotenoids such as beta-carotene, which the body converts to vitamin A. These include carrots, pumpkins, orange-coloured squash and sweet potatoes. Some orange-coloured fruit such as apricots,

cantaloupe, mango and papaya are also important sources of carotenoids. People can eat them in place of an orange vegetable. Oranges, though a good source of nutrients such as folate and vitamin C, are not a good source of carotenoids.

Choose vegetables and fruit prepared with little or no added fat, sugar or salt. Most vegetables and fruit are naturally low in fat.

Vegetables and fruit become high sources of fat when they are breaded, fried or served with cream-based sauces, whipped cream or butter.

French fries, onion rings, salads with large amounts of dressing and fruit served with cream are just a few examples of higher fat choices. People can cook vegetables or enhance the flavours of a salad using a small amount of unsaturated oil, such as canola or olive oil.

Frozen and canned vegetables and fruit are a healthy and convenient option. Fruit in heavy syrup, however, has more sugar and adds extra calories. Choose unsweetened frozen fruit or fruit packed in juice.

Canned vegetables usually contain added salt. People can rinse and drain canned vegetables to lower the sodium content. Some frozen vegetables come with added seasonings and sauces. Find the amount of fat and salt (sodium) in prepared vegetables by looking at the Nutrition Facts table on the packaging.

Benefit from eating vegetables and fruit at all meals and snacks.

Have vegetables and fruit more often than juice.

Canada’s Food Guide recommends that people choose vegetables and fruit more often than juice to get more fibre. It can help people feel full and satisfied, which may help reduce the risk of obesity.

FOOD GUIDE SERVINGS FOR VEGETABLES AND FRUIT

What is one Food Guide Serving?

In general, one medium fresh vegetable or fruit or 125 mL (1/2 cup) cut-up is equivalent to one Food Guide Serving. One Food Guide Serving of salad or raw leafy greens is 250 mL (1 cup) and 125 mL (1/2 cup) of cooked leafy green vegetables. A Food Guide Serving of dried fruit is 60 mL (1/4 cup). A Food Guide Serving of juice is equivalent to 125 mL (1/2 cup).

Source: Health Canada


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