We all know that we need to eat our “five a day” portions of vegetables, but do we really know why?
The first thing that comes to our minds is definitely fibres and gut health, which are obviously vey important, yes, but is that the only reason to include plenty of veggies in our diet?
Today I would like to share with you the four most important reasons why we really should include plenty of vegetables ( and moderate amount of fruit ) in our diet.
1. They have only few calories
Among the many food groups, vegetables are the ones that have the least calories. Now, we all know that a good nutrition is not about restricting calories, but it is also true that if we have to lose weight, lowering the amount of calories can help.
2. They are rich in vitamins & minerals
Vegetables are really rich in vitamins and nutrients. Not all of them, but most of them are actually presents in plant based food like vegetables and fruits. Folates, magnesium, vitamin A, vitamin K, are some of the vitamins and minerals that plants are rich with.
3. They slow down the absorption of carbs
We all know that fibers help us with regular bowel movements, but they also have another important function, which is to help us slow down the absorption of carbohydrates. So next time you that you decide to make that risotto make sure that you cook it with loads of vegetables!
4. They are rich in phyto-nutrients
This is one of the most important, yet underestimated reasons why we should incorporate plenty of veggies in our diet. Most plants food have what someone once called “nature’s own medicine” which are phytonutrients, that specific nutrients that found only in vegetables and fruits. You may have heard of polyphenols, flavonoids and other compounds that are believed to have beneficial health properties like anti-oxidants and anti-inflammatory, that you can find only in plants food.
5. They feed your gut microbioma
The more diverse is your vegetable consumption and the more diverse your gut microbiome will be. Gut microbiota diversity is considered beneficial for health. We now know that the little bacteria that reside in our gut are important with for our immune health, nutrient absorption, regulation of inflammation and some say obesity too.
Go to the farmer’s market and enjoy a wide array of colorful veggies. Your gut will be thankful for it!