September 27, 2014

Fruits and Veggies Make You Happy!

An article came out last week through Science Daily about mental well-being and its association with fruit and veggie intake.  The University of Warwick found:

"New research focused on mental wellbeing found that high and low mental wellbeing were consistently associated with an individual's fruit and vegetable consumption. 33.5% of respondents with high mental wellbeing ate five or more portions of fruit and vegetables a day, compared with only 6.8% who ate less than one portion."

Or basically: if you eat 5+ daily fruits/veggies per day, you will have better mental well-being that those who do not.

There is a campaign led by the Produce for Better Health Foundation called Fruits & Veggies More Matters to help Americans improve their health by eating more produce. They have a helpful site full of recent nutrition news/research, seasonal menus, kids activities, and healthy recipes and ideas on how to incorporate more fresh produce.

Five servings isn't actually a lot. For example, you could have a cup of berries with breakfast and an apple for an afternoon snack, then have some carrots and hummus when you get home, and a side salad with tomatoes and mushrooms for dinner and you're there! Note I didn't list potatoes, corn or fruit juice as veggie servings - they technically are but these foods are what make up the majority of American's "veggie" intake and I think we can do better.

If you are able to consume 7+ servings of fruits and veggies per day, you can actually live longer, so says recent research.  Why not add in a couple more servings in the name of longevity? Whether you're increasing fresh produce for the sake of fiber, heart health, weight management, feeling vibrant, longevity or well-being, you can't go wrong with adding more to your diet. Have fun with it!
Study: University of Warwick. "Fruit and vegetable consumption could be as good for your mental as your physical health." ScienceDaily, 23 September 2014. 

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