Snack Smarter: Healthy Options to Keep You Fueled Throughout the Day

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Eating eight servings of fruits and vegetables per day is even better for your health than the usual recommendation of five servings per day, according to experts. To consume more, try making smoothies with a variety of fruits and adding vegetables to soups and stews. Eat a wide range of fruits and vegetables as no single type has all the nutrients your body needs. Remember that a serving size is usually about 3 ounces (80 grams), which is about the same as a small banana, medium-sized apple, or small carrot.

Pre-cut and bagged vegetables are just as healthy as raw vegetables and are a time-saving option for busy individuals. Beta-carotene in carrots dissolves in fat, so cooking carrots with a little bit of oil increases the amount of this antioxidant that the body can absorb. Studies have shown that herbal teas have many health benefits, such as reducing inflammation, fighting infections, and lowering blood pressure. Eating nuts, especially almonds, walnuts, and hazelnuts, can lower the risk of metabolic syndrome, a disorder that increases the risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Replacing red meat with fish, chicken, and plant-based proteins like nuts and beans can lead to a longer and healthier life. Watch out for food labeled as “lite,” “low-fat,” or “healthy eating,” as they may still have high amounts of calories, sodium, or other unhealthy elements.

Eight is preferable to five

Experts say that eating eight servings of fruits and vegetables per day is even better for your health than the normal advice of five servings per day. To eat more, do the following:

  • Make smoothies with a mix of fruits, and add a variety of veggies to soups and stews to obtain more nutrients.
  • Eat a wide range of fruits and vegetables, since no single type has all the nutrients your body needs.

Verify your serving size

To get the daily required amount of fruits and vegetables, it’s helpful to remember that a serving size is usually about 3 ounces. (80 grams). This is about the same as a tiny banana, a medium-sized apple, or a small carrot. With this rule of thumb in mind, it should be easy to eat enough fruits and vegetables to keep your health in good shape.

Buy clean, bagged vegetables

If you find it hard to find the time to scrub, peel, and chop veggies, you’ll be happy to know that pre-cut and bagged vegetables are just as healthy. Look for things like washed salad greens and green beans, asparagus, carrots, baby corn, peas, and lima beans that have already been cut and are ready to cook. By employing these goods, you may save time on cooking and still eat healthy, even if it costs a little extra money.

Carrots should be roasted

Since beta-carotene dissolves in fat, cooking carrots with a modest bit of oil can increase the amount of this antioxidant that is in the carrots. In fact, a 2011 study discovered that human bodies can only absorb 11 percent of the beta-carotene in raw carrots, but 75 percent of the beta-carotene in stir-fried carrots. Add cooked carrots to stews, soups, casseroles, and roasts, and cook them with a small quantity of oil, to get more beta-carotene.

Sip some herbal tea


Studies have shown that herbal teas are good for your health in many ways. For example,

  • Chamomile can help reduce inflammation and boost the immune system.
  • It has been demonstrated that peppermint can help fight infections and get rid of dangerous free radicals that are created when chemicals react in the cells of the body.
  • Hibiscus can help bring down blood pressure.

Use nuts to reduce inflammation

Scientists from Spain revealed in a recent study that eating a lot of nuts, especially almonds, walnuts, and hazelnuts; can help lower the risk of metabolic syndrome. This disorder is marked by a collection of symptoms that make becoming type 2 diabetes and heart disease more likely. This is the first study to show that eating a lot of nuts can lower levels of chemicals associated to inflammation and other health problems. To eat more nuts, you may eat them as a snack between meals or find ways to add them to your favorite dishes.

Replace roast beef with nut roast

If you give up your usual Sunday roast in favor of something healthy, like a nut or lentil loaf, you might live longer. Recent studies have indicated that eating one more serving of red meat like lamb, beef, or hog per day enhances the chance of dying early by 13%. Instead, people can live longer and healthier lives by eating fish, chicken, and plant-based proteins like nuts and beans. Red meat should be limited to about 1 1/2 ounces (40 grams) each day, and steak and other delights should be saved for special occasions. Prioritizing healthy protein sources that come from plants will help you keep a balanced and healthy diet.

Watch out for “lite” foods

Be careful not to assume that meals labeled “lite,” “low-fat,” or “healthy eating” are healthier than other meals. Some “light” meals can have a lot of calories and some “low-fat” meals can have too much sodium. US researchers have found that snacks that say they are low-fat can make people eat up to 50% more than snacks that don’t say they are low-fat. Unless your doctor has told you to follow a low-fat diet, it is frequently best to choose standard or full-fat items and just eat fewer of them. Some typical claims on food labels are:

  • Less fat, sugar, and salt: These foods contain at least 25% less fat, sugar, or salt than the regular version, although they may still have a lot of fat or other unhealthy elements.
  • Low fat: no more than 3g of fat for 100g of solid food, and no more than 1.5g of fat each 3/4 cup of liquid food. (100ml) (low-fat milk: 1.8g fat per 100ml).
  • These foods don’t have any added sugar, but they may still have a lot of sugar from natural sources. For example, goods with added milk may have milk sugar, while fruit juices have sugar from fruit.
  • Lite/light: These items have at least 30% less of at least one usual value, like calories or fat, than regular products from the same brand. But the “lite” version of one brand’s product may have the same amount of fat or calories as the regular version of another brand’s product. Check the number of calories per 100 grams to compare items.

Observe the label

US researchers have found that those who routinely read the nutrition labels on food packages tend to eat about 5% less fat than those who don’t.

Boost your energy with juice


Instead of tea or coffee, think about having a glass of orange juice as your post-dinner beverage. Vitamin C actually works to promote iron absorption, lowering the risk of anemia, whereas plant chemicals found in tea and coffee can bind to iron in the gut and prevent your body from using it. By choosing orange juice instead of caffeinated drinks, you can increase your iron and vitamin C levels, promoting optimum health.

Brown is better than white

American scientists have recently shown that the color of the rice you eat can affect your health. In particular, they observed that the chance of getting type 2 diabetes goes up by 10% for every daily serving of white rice. Even though we don’t fully understand why this happens, it is suspected that white rice’s higher glycemic index (GI) than brown rice may cause blood glucose levels to rise more quickly. Also, white rice has less B vitamins, insoluble fiber, and magnesium, all of which can help lower the risk of diabetes. When you can, select brown rice over white rice for your health’s sake.

Begin with asparagus

Asparagus is a tasty and healthy vegetable that has a lot of oligo fructose, a natural soluble fiber that can help control your appetite and make you feel full. Dutch scientists recently found that oligo fructose can trigger the release of hormones in the stomach that control hunger. People who took oligo fructose supplements ate 11% fewer calories after only 13 days. Oligo fructose is also found in bananas, onions, chicory, barley, wheat, and tomatoes, in addition to asparagus. Consider adding these foods to your diet to help curb your hunger and make you feel fuller faster.

Stay away from sugar

Too much sugar in your diet can cause tooth damage and merely gives you calories without any other nutrients. Also, eating too much sugar can elevate the amount of harmful triglyceride fats in the blood. This is linked to a decreased amount of “good” cholesterol (HDL), which protects against heart disease. Consider the following ways to cut down on sugar:

  • Stay away from soft drinks, candy, morning cereals with a lot of sugar, and other foods with added sugars including dextrose, fructose, invert sugar, maltose, and syrups.
  • Make sure you know how much sugar is in processed foods like frozen dinners, pasta sauces, sweets, and bread.
  • Only eat sugars that come from fruits and vegetables.
  • Pick breakfast cereals with no more than about 8 grams of sugar per serving.
  • Instead of sugar, use spices like vanilla, cinnamon, and ginger to provide sweetness.




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