1 Thing Fruits and Vegetables Can’t Do (And 6 Things They Can)

An apple a day may keep the doctor away, but it won’t be much help if you’re trying to slim down. Recent research reviewed studies on the link between fruit and vegetable consumption and weight gain, concluding that eating more of them won’t take the pounds off—not without an overall reduction in the number of calories consumed.

Before you forsake the farmer’s market though, keep in mind that your favorite fruits and vegetables still have a bevy of amazing health benefits. Here, 6 reasons to load up (and the best fruits and veggies to reach for):

 

 

They can help protect you from allergic reactions.

Make sure you’re eating your applies with the skin on—it contains an antioxidant that has antihistamine properties. One study even found that people who eat five apples a week have better lung function than people who don’t.

 

 

They can lower blood pressure.

Not only can foods rich in potassium lower blood pressure, you can get the benefits without eating bananas all day. In fact, bananas don’t even rank in the top 10 of best sources of potassium—instead, reach for baked sweet potatoes, beet greens, winter squash, prune juice, and carrot juice.

 

They can fight signs of aging and age-related diseases.

Ever heard of anthocyanins? They’re antioxidant flavonoids that do a ton for you, protecting you against cognitive decline (not to mention cancer, diabetes, and heart disease). Good thing they’re so easy to spot—anthocyanins are what provide berries and plants with their rich red, blue, and purple colors. Find them in berries (like acai, blueberries, blackberries, cherries, and cranberry), as well as blue corn, eggplant, and red cabbage.

 

 

They boost your immune system.

You probably equate vitamin C—a huge immune system booster that also protects against cardiovascular diseases and eye disease—with oranges. But other fruits and vegetables pack an even bigger punch. Opt for guava, sweet red pepper, and kiwis, which have over the daily recommended amount of vitamin C per serving.

 

 

They can reduce your cholesterol and lower your risk of heart disease.

Dietary fiber helps lower your cholesterol and risk of heart disease, in addition to keeping bowels moving and helping you feel full. Tired of beans? Grab fiber-rich veggies and fruits like artichoke, baked sweet potato (with the peel), Asian pears, pumpkin, and spinach.

 

 

They keep bones and teeth healthy.

You don’t need to eat dairy to get your fill of calcium. Other great sources include collard greens, turnip greens, spinach, kale, and okra.

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198 comments

Dale O.

A delicious and well-balanced diet, as others have already mentioned, is healthy and delightful. I can't imagine being without non-organic fruit and veggies as part of my diet. Apple season is here and it is even fun going out foraging for the smaller but flavour packed wild apple.

Magdalena J.
Past Member 2 years ago

Thank you!

Alexandra G.
Alexandra G2 years ago

thank you

Joy S.
Joy s2 years ago

Love most of those! Thanks

Erin H.
Erin H2 years ago

Interesting article, thank you!

Carmen Baez
2 years ago

Thank you

Fi T.
Fi T2 years ago

Having a balanced diet is the key

Erica Writesel
Erica Writesel2 years ago

shared. thanks!

Elena T.
Elena Poensgen2 years ago

Thank you :)

Elizabeth M.
Elizabeth M2 years ago

Thank you for posting Diana.