“I just don’t like vegetables!” – such a cop-out. I am sorry but, seriously??? How is it possible someone can say this phrase when there are hundreds of varieties of vegetables out there in the world. How can you hate them all? Not possible, people just choose the bad stuff over them because it’s easy.
Eating more veggies and fruits (plants) can be so beneficial to your health and well being, I suggest taking another look at what’s out there and trying some of the tips below. But first, read the benefits of following a plant based diet.
BENEFITS OF EATING A MORE PLANT BASED DIET
- Vegetables (by themselves) are low calorie, low in fat and contain zero cholesterol. Watch how you cook them though as added oils, sauces and seasonings can add cholesterol, fat and calories.
- If you’re watching your calories, eat more vegetables or fruit. You can practically eat as much as you want without feeling guilty (this is without added oily sauces or seasonings). They’ll help fill you up so you don’t waste your calorie allowance on junk foods.
- Eating a more plant based lifestyle will make you generally feel better. You won’t feel sluggish or fatigued when you fill your body with healthy foods.
- High carb fruits can provide a healthy energy boost.
- Fruits and veggies are high in fiber which helps make you feel full, so you won’t be snacking all day on junk. If you feel a craving for something junky, grab a piece of fruit or veggie!
- Fiber can also help with constipation. If you find that you’re struggling to have a bowel movement at least once a day, you have a problem. Add fruits and veggies to your diet and you will notice a change in your bowel movements.
- Fruits and Vegetables add more color and texture to your plate! The more color, the more nutrients you’re getting. EAT A RAINBOW EVERYDAY!
- Fruits and veggies are great for eye health, reducing the risk for macular degeneration or cataracts in older adults.
- A vegetable-filled diet can reduce your risk of heart disease, stroke, obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart attack or cancer.
- Fruits and veggies can be purchased in a convenient form such as pre-cut, frozen or canned. Avoid added salt/sodium in the canned ones.
- There are so many different varieties of fruits and vegetables out there, you’ll never get bored. For best results in taste and cost, buy when they’re in season. See this seasonal produce chart.
- There are also so many different varieties of beans and legumes out there. You will never get bored.
- Avoiding highly processed store bought pastas can be a healthy way to save on calories and get more nutrients. Make your own pasta noodles from veggies (spaghetti squash or zucchini “zoodles” are awesome choices) or buy plant-based pasta made with corn, rice or quinoa.
- Not only do vegetables include protein, but another great plant-based protein source is beans or legumes.
- Whole grains such as brown rice, quinoa, millet, farro, couscous, etc are all good plant based foods. These provide healthy vitamins and can be used in a variety of different types of recipes from breakfast until dinner.
8 TIPS TO EATING A MORE PLANT BASED DIET (in more detail)
- Each week, try a new vegetable or fruit. Think about what vegetable or fruit you’ve never had, or go to the store and check out what they have and buy something you’ve never tried. If you like it, awesome! You’ve got a new healthy food to add to your diet. If you don’t then move on the next new vegetable or fruit next week.
- Eat at least one fruit or veggie every meal. More is great, but at least try to add one for every meal (breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks) each day.
- Eat your leafy greens everyday. Even if you have to sneak them into a smoothie, add them into your diet. They offer so many health benefits.
- Make smoothies! Everyone loves sweet and delicious smoothies. I haven’t met anyone who says they don’t like them. Fruit, veggies, greens, nuts and seeds are all plant based foods you can add to your smoothies. BONUS: Kids love them! Sneak veggies into their diet easily with a smoothie! Here is How To Make A Green Smoothie post we wrote.
- I know beans and legumes are not a fruit or vegetable, but they are from a plant and just as healthy. Eat these 2-3 times a week to get some healthy plant protein. Try new varieties. Make soups, bean burgers, chili, burritos, tacos or rice and beans.
- Choose spaghetti squash, quinoa pasta or make any kind of veggie noodles in place of pasta. Vegetables can be spiralized and made into noodles – a great way to reduce your complex carb intake (regular pasta) and get some healthy veggies in.
- Try to add raw veggies to your daily menus. When you cook vegetables a lot of the nutrients are depleted, so try to eat some raw stuff daily. Salads with tons of veggies are a good choice, along with smoothies, of course.
- Eat a rainbow. As you know vegetables and fruits come in practically every color in the rainbow. Be sure to mix up your daily intake and eat fruits and vegetables of all colors.
HEALTHY PLANT BASED DIET RECIPE IDEAS
- Roasted Vegetables
- Spaghetti Squash Primavera
- 17 Healthy Veggie Chip Ideas
- Zucchini Noodles with Creamy Avocado Sauce, Tomatoes and Chopped Almonds
- Spicy Roasted Brussels Sprouts
- Sweet Potato, Lima Bean and Kale Soup
- Spiced Chickpea and Squash Wraps
- Brown Rice Veggie Sushi Rolls
- Grilled vegetables and fruits
- 5 Quick and Easy Berry Ideas
- 7 Healthy Snack Ideas That Include Fruits and/or Veggies
- Quinoa (how to make it + recipe ideas)
- Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms
- Breaded and Roasted Artichokes
- Homemade Marinara Tomato Sauce
- Green Smoothie (fruits and vegetables)
- Apple Cabbage Coleslaw
- Fresh Squeezed Juice Pops
- Afternoon Energy Smoothie
- Fruity Skewers Snack
- Black Bean Brownies
So, that’s it. Stop saying “I don’t like vegetables” because there really is no excuse for that phrase. I am positive you can find a veggie you like if you just give them all a chance. Check out our Vegetarian Meal Plan App (plant based diet meal plan) if you need help planning weekly meals for you (and your family if you have one).