We all know that eating fruits and vegetables is good for us – but new research results couldn’t make the point much clearer: including fruits and vegetables in your daily diet helps you live longer.
- Those who consumed 3 vegetables a day lived 32 months longer than those who reported never consuming vegetables.
- Those who consumed 5 servings of fruits and vegetables each day lived 3 years longer than those who never ate fruit or vegetables.
- Those never consuming vegetables had a 53% higher mortality rate within the 13-year study period.
Simply put, the lower your fruit and vegetable intake, the greater the likelihood of a shorter lifespan and death.
What’s also interesting is that while we have known about the overwhelmingly positive effects of fruit and vegetable consumption for specific health issues – everything from cardiovascular disease to cancer to bone health – this is one of the first large-scale studies to look at the impact on overall lifespan.
The really good news is that just 3 servings of fruits and vegetables daily give huge benefits! To help you get started, here’s one of my favorite veggie-filled recipes that can be served as a side dish, tossed with pasta or used with a wrap:
Indian-Style Roasted Vegetable Medley
(10 servings)6 large cloves garlic, coarsely chopped 4 medium-sized potatoes, unpeeled and diced into 1-inch cubes 2 large sweet potatoes, unpeeled and diced into 1-inch cubes 2 large onions, sliced lengthwise 1 medium-sized eggplant, diced into 1-inch cubes 1 medium-sized cauliflower, diced into 1-inch cubes ¼ C melted clarified butter 1 Tbsp ground coriander 2 tsp ground turmeric 1 tsp ground cumin 1 tsp sea salt ½ tsp black cumin seed (optional) Chili powder to taste Finely chopped fresh cilantro as a garnish
1. Preheat the oven to 400ᴼF. Lightly coat two 9-x-13-inch baking dishes with vegetable oil and set aside.
2. In a large bowl, combine the garlic, potatoes, onions, eggplant, cauliflower and butter. Toss well.
3. Add the coriander, onion powder, turmeric, ground cumin, salt, cumin seed and chili powder to the vegetables and toss well.
4. Transfer the vegetables to the prepared baking sheets, spreading them out in a single layer.
5. Roast the vegetables for 35 minutes, or until lightly browned and fork-tender. Top with a handful of cilantro and serve.
Recipe courtesy of The Amazing Acid Alkaline Cookbook by Bonnie Ross
Bellavia, Andea, et. al. 2013. Fruit and vegetable consumption and all-cause mortality: a dose-response analysis. Am J Clin Nutr, vol 98. Pp. 454-9.