The Guardian last week posted an online article called: Forget five a day, eat 10 portions of fruit and veg to cut risk of early death.
“Five portions of fruit and veg a day is good for you, but 10 is much better and could prevent up to 7.8 million premature deaths worldwide every year, say scientists.”
Interesting that in Japan the Health Service recommends 17 units of veg and fruit per day, compared to 5 per day in the UK. Rates of breast cancer in Japan are 6 x lower than in the US but when Japanese women migrate to the US and adopt the American diet and lifestyle the rate of breast cancer eventually rises to the same level as US women.
So what are 10 portions? Here’s an example:
The article summarises the research and finds that we can forget the supplements. Eating whole foods rather than extracted nutrients is best. I generally agree with this, except for a few very carefully chosen high quality supplements, that I take and recommend to my clients eg Vitamin D.
Quoting the article: “Most likely it is the whole package of beneficial nutrients you obtain by eating fruits and vegetables that is crucial to health,” he said.
In my book Eat Dance Shine I mention that there may well be many tens if not hundreds of phytonutrients present in plants that biochemists have not yet identified, that all work synergistically together. Isolating them into individual supplements makes them less bioactive and so less effective.
Why a plant-based diet? Because it is rich in vitamins and minerals, phytonutrients and fibre reducing chronic inflammation which results in arthritis, heart disease, high cholesterol, cancer etc. Plant foods unlike ‘meat, wheat and anything from a teat’ creates an alkalizing environment where diseases cannot exist. Diseases flourish in an acidic body.
From research data involving over 2 million people , “it is clear from this work that a high intake of fruit and vegetables hold tremendous health benefits, and we should try to increase their intake in our diet”.
“People should aim to eat at least five portions of vegetables and fruit a day but the more the better. If people find this hard, why not start by adding an extra portion of fruit or veg a day to your lunch or try swapping one of your naughty snacks for a piece of fruit?”
It’s simple but not always easy. That’s why I lead Juice and Smoothie Making Workshops to inspire people to eat 10 or even 20 a day!
Juices and smoothies are tasty and quick to make, easy to digest and absorb, and a great way to increase your vegetable and fruit intake….the ultimate fast food!
My next Juice and Smoothie Making Workshop is on Wednesday morning March 15th in my kitchen.