It’s the 11th week of Cassie’s Challenges and this weeks focus is to eat 2 serves of fruit every day! Read on for some ideas on how to sneak more into your diet…
Happy Monday friends! I hope everyone had a relaxing weekend and are feeling recharged and ready to take on another week! Hands up if you wrote a letter for last week’s challenge? As I discussed in last week’s post, I penned one to my late Pop. Although I obviously can’t give it to him, the process was cathartic and I was filled with lovely memories of him.
We gathered as a family to have a potluck dinner on Friday, the first anniversary of his death, and my Nan gave me a letter I wrote Pop when I was younger. Turns out I had expressed my feelings years ago through terrible jokes. The fact that he kept it made me smile and reminded me of the power of the written word. I’m going to keep this in mind and make sure I regularly express my love and admiration to those close to me. Whilst it doesn’t have to be a physical letter, I do love the fact that it’s something you can physically keep forever.
How did you find this challenge? Was the recipient of your letter thrilled? Will you take the time to do it again? I’d love to hear from you – so make sure to leave a comment if you participated in the challenge!
Now, let’s get on to this week’s challenge:
Week 11 – Eat 2 serves of fruit every day
Fruit has had a bit of a bad rap over the past few years, particularly with concerns surrounding its high carbohydrate and sugar content and the impact of this on our weight. In fact, some best-selling weight loss books are now encouraging people to stop eating fruit altogether!
Nutritionally, fruits are a great source of fibre, potassium, vitamins A, C and E, and folate. These nutrients all help to guard our bodies from disease, and a diet rich in fruit has been linked to lower rates of heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes to name a few.
Fruits can also be high in sugar. Overconsumption of those fruits that are high in sugar can certainly lead to weight gain. However, when you consider that the average Australian barely consumes half the recommended amount of fruit, this risk may be the least of our concerns!
Whilst fruit should be consumed mindfully (e.g. don’t eat 20 apples a day), it certainly still has a place in a healthy, well balanced diet. As such, this week’s challenge is focused on getting a good dose of fruit back in our days!
I’ll be the first to admit I don’t eat 2 serves of fruit every day. Some days I’m lucky to eat one! But as per the Australian Government’s health recommendations, everyone over the age of 9 should be getting 2 serves a day.
A standard serve is about 150g or:
- One medium banana, apple, pear or orange
- 2 small apricots, kiwi fruits or plums
- 1 cup of diced or canned fruit (no added sugar)
- ¼ cup of dried fruit
- ½ cup of 100% fruit juice (no added sugar)
Fruit juices lack fibre, and both fruit juices and dried fruits can be high in sugar, so these should only be consumed on occasion. In fact, most our fruit consumption should be fresh and whole to gain the most nutritional benefits.
If, like me, you struggle to get enough fruit into your diet, I’ve listed a few ways below that you can pack more in to your day!
How to incorporate more fruit in your diet:
1. Top it up
Throw some cut up fruit onto your cereal or toast of a morning. You can even put fruit into your salad for lunch or dinner.
2. Snack it, snack it good
Eat a piece of fruit as a snack between meals. Keep a fruit bowl on display as a good reminder to hit the fruit first.
3. I like to smooth it, smooth it
Throw half a banana and a handful of frozen berries with some milk and protein powder into a blender and make your own delicious fruit smoothie.
4. The sweetest thing (is to put fruit in dessert duh)
Eat it as a dessert – stewed or poached fruit, baked apples or fruit crumbles. You can also add bananas easily to pancakes making even healthier version.
As usual, I’ll be documenting my progress for this week’s challenge on Instagram. If you are playing along at home, make sure to upload your photos with the hashtag #beforeverhealthier so I can see all the delicious fruits you’re eating!
And if you want to look back at the previous week’s challenges, I’ve listed them below!