For better heart health, eat more fruits and veggies!
Did you know that vegetables and fruit with a red hue have special qualities that contribute to a nutrient-dense diet and improved heart health?
Meredith Fuson-Hill, RDN, said, “Not only are fruit and veggies a great source of fiber, a vital component for successful weight loss by because they satisfy your appetite, but those that are colored red also pack a powerful punch of antioxidants and phytochemicals, which have a positive impact on your overall health.”
What red fruits and veggies should you eat? Fusion-Hill said to include these super foods:
- Red onions
- Red potatoes
- Red cabbage
- Red peppers
She said every fruit and vegetable provides its own unique combination of vitamins and minerals, making it important to eat a variety in order to keeps things balanced.
Many people have concerns about the amount of naturally occurring sugars in different fruits. It’s often considered a good idea to aim for a ratio of 3:1 – meaning 3 vegetables to 1 fruit.
This technique will allow for the inclusion of fruit while naturally keeping sugar intake in check.
Is it better to eat organic?
As for organic vs. conventional, you can find the annual “Dirty Dozen” and “Clean Fifteen” reports listing the fruits and vegetables most likely to need thorough washing to remove pesticides as opposed to those that don’t at the Environmental Working Group.
If you find a fruit or vegetable on the Dirty Dozen list, you may want to choose to purchase the organic option to reduce exposure to harmful pesticides or other chemicals. On the other hand, if you find the item on the Clean Fifteen list, generally it’s safe to pay a little less and purchase the conventionally grown option.
In the end, if you have any doubts, give your fruits and veggies a wash under plain running water. You can see tips on how to clean produce here at the FDA.
If you’re looking to make changes to your diet to improve nutrition overall or to help with heart health, including more fruits and vegetables with a red hue is a great place to begin.
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