Fruits and vegetables, and why you should eat them

Fruits and vegetables, and why you should eat them

By: Sophia Ramirez

In charge of the health and nutrition sector of the 5xDay Foundation

Nutritional therapy has been recognized as one of the most important components of a comprehensive Diabetes treatment. Including fruits and vegetables in a person with Diabetes’s diet can bring several benefits, because, besides from strengthening the immune system with the vitamins and minerals they contain, these are also an excellent source of fiber, which, not only provides more satiety and facilitates digestion, it also improves blood glucose levels control.

Each main meal (breakfast, lunch or dinner), should include an 80g portion of any seasonal fruit or vegetable as these are cheaper and of better quality.

This summer you can find the following vegetables and fruits:

Vegetables

Squash

It contains vitamin C, which helps the immune system, and vitamin B1, which is necessary to obtain energy from food.

Make sure they are tender, firm, without any bruising or insects; refrigerate them without washing them and they’ll last for up to two weeks. Eat them as you like: raw, cooked, in soups or salads and alternate them with other vegetables to get more vitamins and minerals.

Ejote

It contains vitamin A, which helps maintain a healthy skin and vision; vitamin C, which favors the immune system; folic acid, which is involved new cell formation.

Make sure they are of a single color, firm and without insects; cut the tips, cook them for five minutes and freeze them in a dated bag. Eat them as you want: in soup, salad or stew.

Nopal

Recognized as the most Mexican vegetable, it is abundant, delicious and highly nutritious. It provides vitamin A, which helps maintain a healthy skin and vision; Vitamin C helps the immune system.

Make sure they are of a solid color, firm and spineless and wash them with clean water. Cook and drain them, they can be refrigerated for up to a week in an airtight container; don’t forget to write down the date.

Green chilli

This is consumed in small amounts and has a low vitamins and mineral content.

Make sure they are of a solid color, firm to the touch, without bruising or rotten parts. Refrigerate without washing them and they can last for up to two weeks. Consume them in soups, stews or sauces.

Pumpkin

It contains vitamin C which strengthens the immune system and folic acid which is involved in the formation of new cells.

Pick them firm, of solid color and unbruised. Refrigerate them without washing them and they’ll last for a week. You can consume them raw or cooked in soup, stews or salads.

Fruits

Lemon

This is rich in vitamin C, which helps our defenses and prevents diseases.

Choose lemons which are firm to the touch, yellow or bright green. Keep them refrigerated without washing them; they’ll last well for up to three weeks. Eat them with green leafy vegetables or legumes, they favor iron uptake.

Papaya

This is a fruit known for its aid for the proper functioning of the large intestine; it contains vitamin C which helps maintain a healthy immune system; it also has vitamins that complement food uptake.

Choose a firm fruit, without any bruising or insects and refrigerate it without washing it; if you don’t consume it immediately it can last for up to 2 weeks. Eat it however you want: alone, in a salad or low-fat milk smoothie.

Pineapple

Rich in vitamin C which helps our immune system; it is highly refreshing for hot weathers.

Buy it as mature as you want to consume it and choose pieces that are yellow with green shades, with a characteristic smell, without bruises or insects.

To keep it well, take off the peel and slice it, you can eat it alone, with salads or in casseroles.

Mango

Its color, as all yellow or orange fruits, indicates the presence of vitamin A which favors vision and healthy skin.

Buy them firm, unblemished, unbruised and without insects. Refrigerate them unwashed if you won’t consume them immediately; they’ll keep for a week.

Eat them as you like; alone, in a salad or low-fat milk smoothie.

Orange

It provides an abundant amount of fiber for the proper functioning of the large intestine; vitamins A, C and minerals involved in the formation and maintenance of bones and teeth.

Choose a fruit that’s firm, unbruised and without insects, and leave it at room temperature without washing it for up to two weeks.

Accompany the orange with green vegetables or legumes to better uptake iron.

Grapes

Ideal for extra energy between meals by providing vitamin C which helps the immune system; Vitamin A which helps maintain a healthy skin and vision.

Get grapes which are firm, of a vivid color and smooth, unbruised and which don’t come off easily from the bunch. After washing them, refrigerate them to conserve them for up to one week. Enjoy them as a dessert, in salads or alone.

Apple

An ideal snack option, because it can be easily carried around and has a very pleasant taste, vitamin A and C. Thanks to the folic acid, potassium and fiber it contains, it provides a good digestion and fluid balance in the body.

Choose a firm, unbruised fruit without any insects. Refrigerate it unwashed if you won’t consume it immediately, it’ll keep for up to three weeks.

Eat it unpeeled so you can better use its fiber and eat it in salads.

Peach

Its color indicates that it contains vitamin A; for healthy skin and good vision.

Buy fruits which are firm, unbruised, unstained and without insects. Refrigerate it unwashed if you don’t consume it immediately, for up to two weeks.

Enjoy it with skin in salads or as a dessert.

There are tons of myths about fruits and vegetables and Diabetes, due to the sugar specifically provided by fruits. Currently there are several studies that support the fact that following a diet with fruits and vegetables is way better than one that restricts them, without forgetting that a healthy diet should include a balance of all food groups.

Source:

AFIS (Agriculture and Fisheries Information Services)

UNESCO 2010

Article sent to Diabetes Up to Date as a collaboration of:

federacionmexdiabdiabeteshoy