|Who doesn't love vibrant veg and funky fruit!|
- Juice it: Fresh fruit and veg juices are energising and delicious! Rather than counting the fruit and veg portions before you juice them, bear in mind hat 150ml unsweetened juice is one portion. Like beans, you can only count one of these a day. And remember that juicing or blending fruit will release the sugar faster into your bloodstream.
- Smooth talking: A smoothie makes a great breakfast or afternoon snack, and you can pack it full of protein and omega oils from plant milks and seeds, too. The thing to remember with smoothies is that a smoothie can count as two portions only if you use 2x80g or150ml juice and 1x80g serving of different fruits or veggies in one smoothie.
- Smart sarnies: If you take a pitta, sandwich, wrap or baguette in your lunchbox, don't just put a boring old lettuce leaf in there; cram it full of as much raw veg as you can- or take your salad in a separate tub. (One of my favourites is home made hummus, vegetable sticks and oatcakes).
- Get more fruity: You can get the day off to a flying start if you include fresh fruit as part of your breakfast: eg: slice a banana and a pear or a portion of berries over your cereal or yoghurt. A piece of fresh fruit or a few dried apricots makes a virtuous and nourishing anytime snack or dessert. I usually aim for 3 pieces of fruit a day- some people say that any more than that is too much sugar.
- Swap carbs for cauli: As long as you make sure you are getting enough calories to see you through the day, try swapping some carby foods like pasta and rice for vegetable versions. If you throw raw cauliflower in your food processor, you get "rice", and the pasta in tagliatelle and lasagne can be swapped for spaghetti squash/courgette ribbons and thinly sliced aubergine.
- Make a date with dried fruit: (Bad pun, sorry.) A bag of dried fruit is easy to take out and about with you and a great standby that will help stop you grabbing crisps or chocolate. Add some nuts and/ or seeds and you have a power-packed and tasty snack. Some of my favourite dried fruits are apricots, figs and lexia raisins.
- Add more veggies: If you are cooking something like tofu scramble or vegan omelette, you can chop some greens, peppers,asparagus, tomatoes etc. in to boost up the veg content of your meal. (Don't forget to have more salad or veg on the side though.)
- Grate idea for kids: Veggies like courgettes, carrots, sweet potatoes or parsnip can be finely grated and added to a tomato-based pasta sauce and if you're lucky, they won't notice a thing! (This is good for reluctant adults too...)