Are you eating 10-a-day?

An interesting article last year suggested that for a longer life you should eat more fruit and veg.

10 portions each day!

Researchers looked at more than 350 studies from around the world that examined the impact of fruit and veg consumption on a range of health outcomes, such as cancer and stroke, as well as premature death.

They found eating more fruit and veg was linked to a lower risk of getting these diseases and dying early when eating up to 800g a day (around 10 portions).

Although I enjoy fruit and veg, my heart sank. TEN seemed a bit too much of a good thing.

I’ve been aiming to eat my 5-a-day for several years now but I thought doubling the amount to 10 was a tad unrealistic. And then I started thinking about the portion sizes and wondered what exactly constituted a PORTION.

Consulting the oracle, the NHS choices website, turned up some useful info.

Some of the portion sizes I’ve had for 5-a-day are more like TWO portions. I’m already eating seven or eight portions of fruit and vegetables every day so it wouldn’t be too difficult to increase to ten.

However, the chief nutritionist for Public Health England explained to the BBC that setting a realistic target such as 5-a-day which people could actually achieve was more important. Dr Tedstone said, “Whilst consuming more than five portions of fruit and vegetables a day may be desirable … adding pressure to consume more fruit and vegetables creates an unrealistic expectation.”

According to a British Heart Foundation survey a couple of years ago,

only a third of adults in Britain achieve the 5-a-day target. The additional expense of fresh fruit and veg. was cited as the main reason for the low take up of the healthy eating target. I doubt that economic circumstances have altered sufficiently to lead to an increase of 5-a-day consumers.

Whether you’re aiming for 10-a-day or happy to settle for 5-a-day, you really should read this: 12 things that really shouldn’t count as your 5-a-day.

And, as you’d expect, the BHF has included red wine on the list.

Thanks for stopping by today. Hope your day is going well. 🙂

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Blueberries: a great porridge topper and good for you too!

Porridge is a great way to start the day

especially with a healthy topper.

Sometimes I include a drizzle of honey and occasionally a sprinkle of cinnamon.

Today I added a few blueberries to my porridge and they were delicious.

I know that a handful of blueberries make a great contribution to your 5-a-day. The NHS website spells out the benefits by asking are blueberries a superfood?

According to the NHS, some nutritionists believe that if you make only one change to your diet it should be to add blueberries.

Blueberries are valued for their high levels of antioxidants.

Antioxidants are a type of molecule that can neutralise free radicals, which are a type of unstable and highly reactive species of molecule. I’m no scientist so if you want to understand more you’ll have to read this NHS page.

Alison Hornby is a dietitian and spokesperson for the British Diabetic Association. She told the NHS researcher that the health claims for blueberries were inconclusive but that blueberries make a fantastic choice as one of your five portions of fruit and vegetables a day.

And I agree with that!

Thanks for visiting my blog today.

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