Here's no surprise: According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), eating a variety of nutrient-packed vegetables lowers risk of obesity, heart disease, stroke, diabetes and certain types of cancer.
Vegetables are chock-full of vitamins, minerals, dietary fiber, plant protein and antioxidants, but just because they're good for you, don't mean that you have to sacrifice taste. Maintain a healthy lifestyle and incorporate veggies into every meal. Don't worry; it's easier than you think.
Celebrity nutritionist and registered dietitian, Keri Glassman says vegetables can be just as delicious as they are nutritious. Check out her top five tips for eating veggies at breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even dessert. Veggie haters, prepare to have a change of heart.
1. Eat raw and get creative
When eating raw veggies, opt for healthy dips like guacamole and bean, and skip the fat-filled french onion. When roasting veggies, add spices like cayenne, rosemary and turmeric. Your taste buds will be thanking you.
2. Shop seasonal produce
Find seasonal produce at your local farmers' market and learn how to prepare your favourite veggies. Take advantage of the unique summer foods that include: beets, capsicums, cucumbers, eggplant, green beans, peas, radishes, summer squash, tomatoes and zucchini. Buy in bulk and freeze.
3. Ditch the high-calorie carbs
Replace carb-heavy foods with healthy and satisfying alternatives. For example, swap potato chips for baked homemade veggie chips, bread for leafy greens, and pasta for spaghetti squash. Don't forget to drizzle veggies with olive oil to build flavour.
4. Variety, variety, variety
Try new cooking techniques to keep your meals interesting. For breakfast, try a veggie smoothie, frittata, or quiche. A simple egg scramble with sun-dried tomatoes, broccoli rabe and touch of goat cheese is Keri's favourite. For lunch, pack veggies into every salad and grain side dish. A wrap with shredded lettuce, tomatoes, bell peppers or cucumber is another option. For dinner, prepare both raw and cooked veggies. Crudités and roasted asparagus are great complements, as well as onion salad and sautéed broccoli.
5. Don’t sacrifice your sweet tooth
Save room for dessert with these tasty veggie dishes. Whip up your favourite zucchini bread or try a new recipe. An ooey-gooey batch of beet brownies or carrot cake oatmeal cookies will make you drool. Believe me, you wont feel bad about indulging.
This article originally appeared on Rodale Wellness