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Ways to add more vegetables into your day

Stop by the Health 1st Wellness Wednesday table between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Nov. 19 in the Children’s Hospital lobby to receive information on the importance of fruits and vegetables. Freee flu shots will also be given to employees.

Source: Prevention Partners of South Carolina
Fruits and vegetables are important for good health and most Americans are not getting the recommended amount each day (five to nine servings a day). Fruits and vegetables contain essential vitamins, minerals and fiber that may help protect you from chronic diseases. Those who eat more fruits and vegetables as part of a healthful diet are likely to have reduced risk of chronic diseases, including stroke and perhaps other cardiovascular diseases and certain cancers.
Also, substituting fruits and vegetables for higher-calorie foods can be part of a weight loss strategy. Eating more fruits and vegetables along with whole grains and lean meats, nuts, and beans is a safe and healthy way to control your weight.

Tips from the Centers for Disease Control
According to the Centers for Disease Control, there are ways to cut calories and eat fruits and vegetables throughout your day:

Substitute some spinach, onions, or mushrooms for one of the eggs or half of the cheese in your morning omelet. The vegetables will add volume and flavor to the dish with fewer calories than the egg or cheese.
Cut back on the amount of cereal in your bowl to make room for some cut-up bananas, peaches, or strawberries. You can still eat a full bowl, but with fewer calories.

Substitute vegetables such as lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, or onions for 2 ounces of the cheese and 2 ounces of the meat in your sandwich, wrap, or burrito. The new version will fill you up with fewer calories than the original.
Add a cup of chopped vegetables, such as broccoli, carrots, beans, or red peppers, in place of 2 ounces of the meat or 1 cup of noodles in a broth-based soup.

Add in 1 cup of chopped vegetables such as broccoli, tomatoes, squash, onions, or peppers, while removing 1 cup of the rice or pasta in your favorite dish. The dish with the vegetables will be just as satisfying but have fewer calories than the same amount of the original version.
Take a good look at your dinner plate. Vegetables, fruit and whole grains should take up the largest portion of your plate. If they do not, replace some of the meat, cheese, white pasta, or rice with legumes, steamed broccoli, asparagus, greens, or another favorite vegetable.

Smart snacks
Most healthy eating plans allow for one or two small snacks a day. Choosing most fruits and vegetables will allow you to eat a snack with only 100 calories.

About 100 calories or less: a medium-size apple (72 calories); a medium-size banana (105 calories); 1 cup steamed green beans (44 calories); 1 cup blueberries (83 calories); 1 cup grapes (100 calories); 1 cup carrots (45 calories), broccoli (30 calories), or bell peppers (30 calories) with 2  tablespoons hummus (46 calories).
Instead of a high-calorie snack from a vending machine, bring some cut-up vegetables or fruit from home. Fruits and vegetables may be purchased at MUSC’s Farmer’s Market from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. every Friday at the MUSC Horseshoe and behind Charleston Memorial Hospital (next to the parking garage). For Thanksgiving, the market will operate  on Nov. 26 from 7 a.m. until 3:30 p.m.

Nov. 14, 2008

The Catalyst Online is published weekly by the MUSC Office of Public Relations for the faculty, employees and students of the Medical University of South Carolina. The Catalyst Online editor, Kim Draughn, can be reached at 792-4107 or by email, Editorial copy can be submitted to The Catalyst Online and to The Catalyst in print by fax, 792-6723, or by email to To place an ad in The Catalyst hardcopy, call Island Publications at 849-1778, ext. 201.