Five a Day Diet

It may sound like an ad campaign catch phrase or even a bank mimicked to get people to save. But really, it’s just what this new diet is called. Actually, it’s not really a diet nor an eating plan. It’s just a way to get people to eat more fruits and vegetables.

Researchers found that eating at least five portions of fruits and vegetables a day has a lot of health benefits, including lower risk of heart disease, prevention of certain cancers, stronger immune system and increased energy levels. The "Five A Day" diet takes you a step closer towards a healthier lifestyle.

However, there’s more to this diet than just eating five portions of various fruits and vegetables. Here are some "Five A Day" diet guidelines.

One at a time

Do not try to cram all five portions of fruits and vegetables at once. You body will not react positively to drastic and rapid changes in your diet. You might even get bloated. Take it slowly. Introduce a small portion of fruit or vegetables on day one, then gradually increase portions.

Do not overstock

Once you succeed in including five portions of fruits and veggies a day in your diet, you might feel the need to stock up on greens and fruits. Don’t. Fruits are highly perishable foods. If you overstock on greens and fruits in your fridge or kitchen counter, they just might end up rotting. Besides, it is always best to eat the freshest fruits and vegetables.

When purchasing fruits and veggies, only buy what you think is enough for you, and simply increase as you go along.

Breakfast inclusions

Include 100% pure and unsweetened fruit juice in your diet. You can also put sliced fruit on your breakfast oats or cereals. You could even make a banana sandwich using wholemeal bread for additional fiber. Or you can mix fresh fruits and yogurt to create parfaits for a delicious breakfast treat.

Lunch Tips

There are a number of ways to include greens in your lunch meals. For instance, if you’re eating a sandwich, add some tomatoes and lettuce. You can also make your own vegetable soup by blending veggies such as spinach and adding cream or milk to thicken and add flavor. Opt for a vegetable salad for your side dish.

Dinner tips

Include two to three (you can start with just one) vegetables in your dinner. Also, include sliced or grated veggies in your stir fries. For dessert, go for fruit or vegetable salads instead of fattening and carb-loaded sweets.