Are you looking to boost your health and well-being while increasing fruit and vegetable intake in your daily diet? It may come as no surprise to people that we are all advised to eat at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables each day. If you ever wondered why or think these figures seem unlikely, read on to get some helpful tips on how you can increase your fruit and veg game daily!

The reason that it is recommended that we eat at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables daily is to make sure that we are consuming a wide variety of nutrients. Our bodies need a daily supply of vitamins and minerals to stay healthy and function at its best. Fruit and vegetables can also help protect against type 2 diabetes and some cancers and help to lower your risk of heart disease.

Increasing your intake can also help to manage cholesterol levels and weight. The latest figures from Nutrition Australia and the Fruit and Vegetable Consortium found that men adult men and women aged 18 years and over are only consuming 2.3 and 2.5 serves of vegetables respectively, on average each day. Fruit consumption is also lower than the recommended guidelines, with 50% of adults hitting the targets.



What is in a portion?


First things first let’s figure out exactly what a portion of fruit and veg looks like:



  • 1 medium apple, orange or pear
  • 2 small apricots, plums or kiwis
  • 1 cup of diced/ canned fruit
  • ½ cup or 125ml of juice (only advised occasionally)
  • 30g or a small handful of dried fruit (only advised occasionally)



  • ½ cup of cooked vegetables
  • 1 cup of raw or salad vegetables
  • ½ cup of sweetcorn
  • ½ medium potato, sweet potato or other starchy vegetables
  • ½ cup of beans, peas or lentils


Tips for increasing fruit and vegetable intake


Eat fresh, frozen, canned and dried vegetables

Even though fresh is often considered best, this does not mean that frozen and canned vegetables can’t be just as healthy. They all count! Just remember to read the nutrition information labels and look out for added sugar and salt.


Start the day as you mean to go on.

If you wake up and aim to hit 5 portions a day it is best to start early and make fruit and veg a staple part of breakfast – no exceptions! This can be done by adding fruit to your cereal or porridge, topping peanut butter toast with a banana or apple or adding chopped tomato and mushrooms to your avocado toast or a portion of spinach to your scrambled eggs. 1 down 4 to go!

Keep her lit at lunch

No matter what you decide to have for lunch, there is always room to add more colour. Weather that be adding a side salad to have with your sandwich such as lettuce, spinach, tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers or beetroot. This can alternatively be crammed into a sandwich or wrap. Why not add extra veg to your store-bought soup or pre-made meal? Saving a piece of fruit for after may also be beneficial.


Double up at dinner!

Let’s make it our mission to include at least 2 different portions of vegetables or salad with each main meal. Pasta and meat? Bulk it up with chopped onion, peppers, tomatoes, mushrooms and spinach. Bolognese? All of the above can also be used along with a double helping of beans and tomatoes! Meat and mash? It’ll only taste better with extra peas, carrots, sweetcorn and broccoli. Pizza? Top it up with a rocket and tomato salad. No matter what it is aim for a double serving of fruit or veg on the side aiming for variety!


Chop it!

Chop up fruit or veg the evening before or in the morning time. Having this pre-prepared will allow you to easily grab on the go and make no excuses for choosing a biscuit as a snack instead of a juicy fruit. Chopping the fruit and vegetables into bite sized pieces can also make it easier to transport if you are planning a day on the go. Make sure to store in an air-tight container and leave in the fridge for when you get hungry between meals.


Eat the rainbow!

I love telling people to build their plate with half of it full of colour. This goes for every meal. The more colour = the more nutrients which our body requires to stay in tip-top shape. Mixing up fruit and vegetable choices also helps to keep it interesting and alleviate boredom.


Replace your sugar cravings with fruit.

Craving something sweet? Give fruit a try first! Fruits contain natural sugars which provide a great sweet hit and may very well satisfy your sweet tooth – all for less calories than a biscuit too! This also goes for if you are craving dessert after a meal. Why not have a fruit bowl with greek yoghurt and dark chocolate? This will also provide added protein, some healthy fats all while keeping you satisfied!


Eat seasonally!

Shopping for what’s in season can be a great way to try new fruits and vegetables when they are tasting their freshest AND will save you some dollars. At the moment, mangos oranges, strawberries kiwis and pineapples may be worth looking out for!


In Summary 

In conclusion, if you are you looking to boost your health and well-being while increasing fruit and vegetable intake in your daily diet, you will need to eat up! The recommendation to consume at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables daily is essential for ensuring a diverse intake of vital nutrients necessary for maintaining good health and preventing diseases like type 2 diabetes, some cancers, and heart disease. Unfortunately, statistics show that many adults are falling short of these targets.

To meet this goal, individuals can start by understanding what constitutes a portion and incorporate fruits and veggies into their daily routines by choosing a variety of preparation methods, embracing colorful options, and replacing sugary snacks with nature’s sweets. Additionally, shopping seasonally can make this dietary shift both delicious and budget-friendly.



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