Tuesday, 17 April 2012


So did you all drink your 1.5litres of water today?

I managed it, despite changing offices three times ... wherever you're working there's usually a water cooler somewhere nearby.

So what's next on the list of healthy foods for you to include in your diet every day?

Well next up is my favourite health food - good old vegetables!

I have to say I'm not a natural veggie lover. I could eat fruit all day but with vegetables I often feel I wouldn't miss them if I didn't eat them. However they are so good for you that everyone should make an effort.

The trick is to find the ones you like - everyone likes some kind of veggie, even if it's just something unadventurous like peas or carrots.
If you're veggie averse it's also worth paying up for the ready prepared mixes that are easy to cook and more varied in flavour. M+S vegetables, fresh or pre-prepared, always taste a bit better than average.

Whilst veggies are healthiest plain or dressed with some olive oil, I'm also not totally against using sauces or dressings to help up the taste factor. This can be a critical factor in getting kids to eat their veg, just buy the sauces with the lowest sugar content.

I aim to have five portions of veg and two fruit daily, but in particular I would recommend at least one portion of each the following to have every day:
- a green leafy vegetables such as, spinach, spring greens, collard, any salad leaves. These are rich in chlorophyll and minerals
- a cruciferous vegetable such as broccoli, cabbage, kale, cauliflower or watercress. These aren't the most popular vegetables but they are the anti-cancer warriors of the food world so worth the effort.
- a red fruit or vegetable such as berries, plums, cherries, peppers, chillies, tomatoes, beetroot, red grapes. These are rich in anti-ageing and anti-cancer antioxidants.
- an orange fruit or vegetable such as carrots, sweet potatoes, oranges, apricots which are rich in betacarotene and vitamin C, both great for skin and eye health.
- onions or garlic - these don't agree with everyone (especially when eaten raw) but if you can tolerate them have at least one of these daily. They are easy to cook into most dinners and are good for heart health and circulation.
- fresh herbs, such as basil, coriander, chives etc - always have a bag in the fridge and add a tbsp to your lunch or dinner
- also try and eat all your fruit and one of your veggies raw to benefit from the live enzymes they contain.

Sound too complicated? Here's how it works in practice
Have some berries with your breakfast cereal (red fruit - 1 portion fruit)
For lunch have a salad with some (green leafy veg) and red + orange red peppers (red + orange + raw, 3 portions veg)
Have an orange or a couple of apricots as part of your afternoon (1 portion fruit) or have this for dessert after your dinner
For dinner have a stirfy made with a mix containing onion and cabbage, broccoli or kale, and add some garlic for good measure. (3 portions veg. Garnish with coriander.

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