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Thread: How many servings of vegetables should we really eat? page

  1. #1
    croí's Avatar
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    Question How many servings of vegetables should we really eat?

    My work is starting to send out reminders for our pre-health screenings for October. They take our BMI, our blood pressure and such to determine if we qualify for discounts on our health insurance. I was skimming their article on healthy eating.. You know whole grains contain no cholesterol and that sort of thing. But then they stated we should be eating 5 servings of vegetables and fruits every day. So, I got to thinking. If, primal eaters, are not eating all the processed junk, are we still needing to eat 5 servings a day? Is it less since we are also getting more nutrients out of our protein? I'm not a huge veggie eater, but still trying new things. I also IF for 16 hour a day, and would think 5 servings would be a bit much.....

    Ideas? Opinions?

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    loafingcactus's Avatar
    loafingcactus is offline Senior Member
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    Americans in general eat less than 2 servings of vegetable a day, mainly in the form of potatoes. Any food study you see, no matter what the topic actually being studied, people who eat more vegetables seem to be doing better. So there seems to be some good evidence to recommend eating the vegetables... If you can get 3 servings a day you are doing better than the vast majority of Americans.

    Also, this is a PB board, for what that's worth, an on PB the top food volume item (the base of the food pyramid) is vegetables.
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  3. #3
    jfreaksho's Avatar
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    Especially if you include fruit in that 5 servings, it really isn't that difficult. Vegetables and fruits tend to be very nutrient-dense, while grains tend to have nothing that we can't find elsewhere more easily and in greater quantities. The nutrients you get from protein are different than the ones you get from fruits and vegetables, for the most part.

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    primalrob's Avatar
    primalrob is offline Senior Member
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    you can certainly get by not eating a lot of vegetables (a la VLC or carnivore type eating), but i wouldn't recommend it. like loafingcactus said, veggies are the primary food in the primal blueprint. meat gets a lot of play here, but that's because meat is awesome whereas veggies are just good.
    but, i think the important thing is not to give it a lot of thought. eat some vegetables (try a little variety) and you'll be doing just fine. there's no need to measure things out and stress whether or not you're getting in five full servings to fit into some CW guidelines. eat a BAS, line up some spinach next to that steak and you're good.

  5. #5
    FairyRae's Avatar
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    A serving is like 1/2 a cup. Following a primal diet (as written in the book), you would probably be getting *more* than 5 servings of veggies a day (more than 2.5 cups). See this sample menu for an example: Low Carb Sample Menu | Mark's Daily Apple

    I personally *do* think we still need the benefits of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals from lots of veggies because of the somewhat toxic world we live in, even if we are already eating primally. Just my opinion though. As with anything, follow your body and do what feels best for you!
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    ChocoTaco369's Avatar
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    Jesus, I get more than 5 servings of vegetables in my lunch salad. I weighed it on my food scale last night. With the Tupperware container, it's 1.2 kg. There was 300g of romaine alone, not to mention a whole cucumber, a large green bell pepper, 3 jalapenos, 4 large 4+" diameter mushrooms and half a pound of chicken.

    That being said, does it really matter all that much? Vegetables are overrated IMO. Sometimes, just to clear out my digestive tract, I'll eat a meal of a pound of pork and 6 eggs. That's it. It's important to eat your greens, but don't go after a set number. Include greens with most meals, then eat a huge meal with a pound of veggies, then eat a meal with no veggies whatsoever. Change it up. Your body stays cleanest when you constantly vary what you eat since it doesn't allow specific toxins to accumulate.
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  7. #7
    iniQuity's Avatar
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    I wouldn't stress it like it's been said. Make sure you eat some during the week and all but forcing yourself to is annoying. I tried for a while but veggies aren't for me so I just eat the ones that I like, and when my gf cooks I definitely get more veggies than I'm used to. She likes to sabotage my carnivorous lifestyle.

    (carnivore + potatoes + ice cream = me)

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    croí's Avatar
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    I do understand the veggies are at the top of PB's pyramid, and I am making an effort to get them in. But I've never been a real big veggie person, salads on occasion, peppers and onion in my weekly fajitas, and green beans are about the extent of it for right now. But I am striving to have a healthier diet, just didn't know if I was "under" doing it. I'm typically stay away from fruit, as I am attempting to lose weight.

    FairyRae, thank you for the link! I will give that a look over.

    iniQuity, I'm right there with you with trying to force them. It does get annoying. Maybe I'll just stick with the ones I like and keep it there for a while.

  9. #9
    FairyRae's Avatar
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    Just wanted to add, that more important than anything else (IMO) is how you *feel*. If eating lower veg and lots of meat etc feels great to you, I wouldn't worry about it! There are plenty of 'carnivore' style primal/paleo folks out there. And you can continue following your body (as your needs and cravings may change.)
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    ok, so the people I know who don't like vegetables don't like them because they don't know how to cook them well. I probably get 4-5 conventional servings of veg whenever I eat a salad, at least another 2-4 when I eat steak, because what's better than fiddleheads and mushrooms, and brussel sprouts with a steak, other than more steak? I've suggested this book more than a few times, as it moves you through methods to cook veg, and gives you amazingly tasty recipes and frameworks. It might be worth a try. I'll take some quality asparagus or summer squash over a filet mignon just about any time with recipes like what's shown in that book. Although, I'm not giving up a ribeye or porterhouse to anyone.
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