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Fruit and Veggies—More Matters Month

Fruit and Veggies—More Matters Month  by Mallory Shan, RD

 

Fruits and veggies are two of the five food groups in MyPlate; necessary for a healthy diet. Yet, according to a study done by the Better Health Foundation, fruits and vegetable consumption in America has declined 7% from 2009 to 2015! To meet the USDA requirement for a healthy diet, women and men older than 19 years old will typically need around 1.5-2 cups of fruits and 2-3 cups of vegetables per day!

Why is it such a big deal to eat fruits and veggies every day? Most fruits and vegetables are naturally low in fat and calories, but very high in vital nutrients for good health. These nutrients include potassium, dietary fiber, folic acid, vitamin A and vitamin C. These health benefits can reduce the risk of diabetes, heart disease, obesity and even certain types of cancer.

At Whittier Street Healthy Center, we believe that eating fruits and vegetables need to be part of our approach to living healthier lives and creating healthier communities. And it doesn’t need to be boring, it can be fun for the whole family!

Here are some pictures of our Whittier kids making Fruit Pizza as a snack at camp! An effective way to engage the children in your family to eat more fruits and vegetables is to get them involved in making the food!

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Fruit Pizza
Serving size 1 fruit pizza
Recipe makes 2 servings

Ingredients
1 Whole wheat English muffin
1 Tbsp of light cream cheese (plain or berry flavor)
½ cup of fruit (chopped strawberries, blueberries, clementines)
2 teaspoons of sunflower seeds

Direction
1) Cut the English muffin in half.
2) Spread cream cheese on both half of the English muffin.
3) Put “fruit toppings” on English muffin.
4) Sprinkle with sunflower seeds on top.

Whittier Street also partnered with FairFoods Inc. starting in 2015 to offer the “$2 a bag” program to provide fresh fruits and vegetables at a discounted price to our patients and families in the community. Distributions are every other Tuesday, at 1:30pm on the 2nd floor.

 

So let’s get cooking to make our families and communities healthier!

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Nutrition

The team of registered dietitians (RD) at Whittier Street Health Center offer comprehensive nutritional assessments and counseling to meet each individual’s nutritional needs. With special attention to maintaining overall health and managing health conditions, such as diabetes and hypertension, the RDs work closely with patients, families and the team of health care providers to develop a personalized nutrition plan for each patient.

To request an appointment call 617-427-1000 or go to http://www.wshc.org/make-an-appointment/

 

To find more great recipes for vegetables, friendly to the whole family, visit the following websites:

http://www.chopchopmag.org/recipes
http://cookingmatters.org/recipes
http://www.cookinglight.com/food/top-rated-recipes/top-rated-vegetable-recipe