Would you like salad or fries with that? Uh, fries, of course. Has anyone ever gone with the salad!? Ok, all jokes aside. Some veggies don’t taste that great. And some of us would rather have teeth pulled than eat them. We all know that eating more vegetables is one of the only things health and fitness experts agree on. But that’s easier said than done if you don’t like the taste. So below are my go to hacks for upping your intake painlessly. But before we get into that, let’s take a quick look at why you should put effort into chowing down your greens.
Vegetables are front and center in the world’s healthiest diets. It doesn’t matter if you’re on a paleo, vegan, low carb, or Mediterranean diet. The advice we’ve all heard ad nauseam is this: EAT MORE VEGGIES! And there are good reasons for it. Let’s look at a few of the key benefits:
- Vegetables are full of nutrients that your body needs. They are the best multivitamin money can buy. Chock full of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, fiber, and phytonutrients. They help you avoid deficiencies, which can make you feel really bad.
- Vegetables fill you up but have minimal calories. Not only are they really good for you. They also help you to lose weight or maintain a healthy body weight.
- Vegetables keep digestion humming along. Both soluble and insoluble fibre have important roles in digestion. Fibre keeps you full for longer, moves waste products through your system, and feeds beneficial bacteria.
- Vegetables add variety. You can mix up just about any meal by adding a side dish of colourful vegetables. With so many choices, they’ll give you an arsenal of snacks and meals that will keep you nourished and lean.
How to Eat More Vegetables
Add to Smoothies or Shakes
Throw a bunch of spinach or mixed greens into your favourite smoothie. You’ll be adding nutrient dense food that you can barely taste. Tip: you can use frozen spinach to make this even easier. Start out with greens, cucumber, celery, and other vegetables without a strong flavour. As you get adventurous, try carrots, beets, and other colourful vegetables.
Make Scrambled Eggs
Scrambled eggs are easy, and you can load them up with lots of vegetables. Mix eggs, salt, pepper, and go to town with the veggies. Things like onions, olives, tomatoes, capsicums, and spinach all work well.
Liam’s Lazy Salad
I’m not big on eating healthy if I can’t make it convenient. It’s got to fit my life. So this is how I eat a salad every day with almost no prep time. Buy a tub or two of mixed washed greens. Buy two different colourful pre-prepped vegetables (like cherry tomatoes, carrots, sprouts, olives, etc.). In the morning before work, throw them in a container to take in. I usually mix some olive oil, apple cider, and sea salt for a dressing. Take it in a separate container. Mix and enjoy. Every week, I simply pick two new vegetables to put on the greens.
Throw Another Mushroom on the Barbie
The BBQ makes everything taste better. You can cook just about any vegetable on it. Try portobello mushrooms, zucchini, carrots, asparagus or whatever else tickles your fancy. Brush with olive oil and add sea salt, and you’re good to go.
Mix It In
Add onions, carrots, grated zucchini, and other vegetables into hamburger or meatloaf mixes. As with smoothies, you won’t notice these in your meals, but you’ll boost the nutritional value.
When cooking a recipe, double the amount of vegetables. This usually won’t affect the taste, but will up your daily intake. It’s easier to eat vegetables that are part of a flavoured meal like soups, stews, and stir fry.
Spend twenty minutes chopping a bunch of vegetables like carrots, cucumber, and cauliflower. Store in containers. Take to work and dip these into healthy options like hummus, guacamole, and tzatziki.
This is such an easy way to cook just about any vegetable. Simply cut up any way you want. Put in a Ziploc bag with oil and sea salt. Coat well and bake in the oven. I like tomatoes, zucchini, squash, asparagus, mushrooms and lots more.
I’ll admit it. Chips and fries are one of my favourite unhealthy foods. But they don’t have to be bad for you. Some vegetables make great chips. Try kale, baked apple, zucchini, and carrots. Add some olive oil and seasoning, bake. Done. I haven’t included starches in this (like potatoes, sweet potatoes, taro, etc.), as most of us struggle with eating more non-starchy vegetables.
Stock up on Frozen Vegetables
If you want an easy option, stock the freezer up with frozen vegetables. Add them as a side dish to your main meals. Flavour it up with simple options like butter, olive oil, garlic, dried herbs, and chilli.
Try Something New
Your taste buds change over time. You may have hated vegetables as a kid and be ok with them now (I managed to get over Brussels sprout trauma, and now love them baked). Try something new each week to see what you like. Once you find your go-to vegetables, start upping your intake.
The Vegetable Challenge – Take Action!
I write to share my experiences and knowledge with you. But my ultimate goal is to give you information that’ll help you eat, move, and live optimally. Get these right, and you’ll transform your body and change your life. So, I like to end each post with some actionable steps you can take immediately.
To get the most out of this post, commit to trying one of the above hacks for upping your vegetable intake. Stick with it for two weeks. Decision creates action. Action creates results.
Add a comment below and let me know which you’re going to try.
Finally, if you want help in putting together a customised program to transform your body, hit me up here.
P.S. If you liked this blog post, I’d owe you one if you could get it out there by emailing it to a friend or sharing it on social media. You might also be interested in my free e-book: The Battle Tested Body Transformation Guide.