So you’ll remember that I was going to try to eat seven portions of fruit and veg per day as recommended by the experts. How’s the first few days been? I hear you say.
It’s pretty disastrous, to be honest. I started off by trying to find out what a portion is. This is not clear. A friend says it’s the same amount as your fist but that only helps with sight, not with weight. He also talks about a cup of peas being one portion. This is quite helpful. I read that the Australians already have this seven portion rule and that they divide it up as two portions fruit and five of veg. But then I find a website that states the Aussie rule is two x 150g fruit and five x 75g veg. Which to my mind makes four fruit and five veg.
The original report states a preference for veg over fruit, raw over cooked and fresh over tinned or frozen though the reasons for not using tinned or frozen are unclear so I decide to ignore those.
I knew that potatoes didn’t count but was unsure about mushrooms. Apparently they do count but not as much as a pepper. Sigh.
As I haven’t been shopping yet, I’ve existing on what we have. Our usual routine is that I make a main meal for me and S to take to work to warm up for lunch, S snacks during the day and I usually have a small something in the evening. So this week I made a spinach and mushroom lasagne containing a whole packet of frozen spinach with the water squeezed out, mixed with ricotta and nutmeg. S thought it had too much spinach in.
For taking the lasagne into work I decided it’s not enough veg and add some sad looking lettuce leaves in the fridge and a handful of tomatoes. So I reckon it’s gone from having 1 1/2 portions of veg to having 2 1/2 portions for lunch. As I always have two portions of fruit for breakfast, I’m well down and buy a smoothie to add another portion. Juices are not recommended as the roughage has gone and you’re left with the sugary bit.
The lasagne lasted two and half days and I make a vegetable tart for lunch for Wednesday. It’s got two portions of veg from the frozen bag of aubergines, courgettes and peppers, another one and half portions in cherry tomatoes and three portions of mushrooms. It cuts into four. So that’s just under two portions each piece. I drag the last of the sad looking lettuce out as an accompaniment.
My weak spot and where there’s room for improvement is the evening snack. I usually have a slice of toast. This is mainly as it’s cheap, easy and I’m not usually that hungry. But what to substitute instead? I’ve no idea what veggie people snack on. Toast as well, probably. The recipe books are not much help as it all involves a lot of cooking and fiddly ingredients. I don’t want to have to make another meal when I come in.
So we’re having meat and fish at the weekends and going for veggie food the rest of the week. But this doesn’t seem to up the veg quota very much. I need to find a toast substitute and possibly just eat a lot more than I usually do. Which is silly.
The experiment continues…