What do fruits and vegetables actually do
Vegetables and fruits - important every day
It can be that much
Vegetables and fruits contain numerous vitamins, minerals and fiber, as well as many secondary plant substances. The German Nutrition Society recommends “5 a day”, i.e. daily three servings of vegetables (about 400 grams) and two servings of fruit (about 250 grams) to eat. One serving is roughly the same as the amount that fits in the palm of your hand. Since there are very different ingredients in the various types of fruit and vegetable, the entire colorful variety of vegetables and fruit on offer should be used.
Apart from very sweet fruits, vegetables and fruits also contain few calories, but important minerals such as potassium or magnesium. It also contains important vitamins such as vitamin C. Various health-promoting properties are ascribed to secondary plant substances, which are particularly effective when combined with a foodstuff. Another plus: With their fiber content, the field and garden crops help digestion and, according to the German Nutrition Society, can reduce the risk of fat metabolism disorders.
Fresh or frozen unsweetened fruits and vegetables are particularly rich in nutrients. However, berries in particular should not be stored too long or too cool. You can find more tips on food storage here. The free booklet "Lagerungs-ABZ" is also available for download.
Frozen berries that do not come from your own garden should always be cooked before consumption. Frozen berries have often been the cause of food poisoning from bacteria such as salmonella or noroviruses.
You should also always wash pre-cut, washed salads because of possible germ contamination!
Legumes such as lentils, white beans, split peas, kidney beans etc. are not really vegetables - but are still recommended. They contain more carbohydrates (starch) and protein than vegetables and also provide more calories.
Nuts are not a fruit either, but they are important suppliers of omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, some vitamins such as vitamin E and minerals such as magnesium. We can only recommend small amounts every day.
Exotic super fruits?
What you do not need are exotic fruits, which are only offered here in dried form (e.g. Goji) or as an extract or puree (Acai, Maqui). Other exotic things can be a nice change, but should not come from air transport if possible. Superfood is superfluous.
Smothies and Co. are not a substitute
Even if it seems practical, smoothies cannot replace fruits and vegetables. The liquid fruits are composed quite differently - some contain a large proportion of juice or juice concentrates, while others contain pureed fruit, fruit pulp, fruit pulp or a mixture of these. There are also smoothies with vegetables mixed with fruit or fruit juices. It is worth taking a look at the list of ingredients here. Since peeled fruits are used almost exclusively, smoothies contain less fiber, vitamins or secondary plant substances than whole fruits. Because many of these important ingredients are in and under the shell.
It looks different, of course, if you make the smoothie yourself at home from fresh (unpeeled) fruit or vegetables and herbs. Then you can avoid chewing problems with raw vegetables. But not everything raw is tolerable. Be careful, put the smoothie in the fridge after preparation and consume it on the same day!
Even extracts from fruit and vegetables or vitamin and mineral preparations, offered as dietary supplements, cannot replace fruit and vegetables with their diverse ingredients.
- Always make sure you have a supply of vegetables and fruits. We have put together information on shopping for you under vegetables and fruit - all about shopping.
- Arrange beautifully cut vegetables and fruit at home as a snack between meals. Then everyone will be happy to help. It is also easy to take with you when cut and packaged in a can.
- For each meal, think about which fruits or vegetables could go with it.
- Double your usual vegetable portion, whether as a salad, as a raw vegetable or as a cooked side dish.
- Use (fresh) garden herbs.
- Try steamed, pureed vegetables as a sauce with pasta.
- Orientate yourself on seasonal vegetables and fruits. You can get suggestions for this from our recipes.
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