The United States Department of Agriculture ChooseMyPlate System suggests you eat about one and one-half cups of fruit every day; but sadly, most people don't eat much fruit, if any at all. You can increase your fruit intake by dumping all the candy, cookies, and ice cream and keep a fresh supply of fruits in your home. The easiest way to have fruit handy is to keep some unpeeled fresh fruit on your kitchen counter. Apples, oranges, pears, nectarines and bananas all keep at room temperature for a few days. Just remember to keep the apples away from the bananas, unless you want them to ripen quickly.
Fruit SmoothiesEnjoy fresh fruit in smoothies. A basic smoothie includes a banana cut into chunks, a cup of berries, a dollop of plain yogurt and a cup of milk or juice. Put everything in a blender for a minute or so and serve. If you have a heavy duty blender you can also add some ice cubes for a milk-shake like texture. Once you have this simple recipe down, you can explore more smoothie recipes:
Fruit SaladsFruit salads are a staple at summertime picnics. They can be light and refreshing or they can be full of extra sugar and fats and higher in calories than you might think. How can you tell? If the fruit is covered in gobs of whipped cream or smothered in sugary syrup, it's probably got a lot of calories from the extra sugar. A low-calorie fruit salad will have just a light dressing that doesn't overpower the flavor of the fruit. You can also add fruit to a traditional garden salad.
Make a simple low-calorie fruit salad by combining fresh melon cubes, pineapple chunks, grapes and strawberries. You can look for more festive fruit salad recipes; just stay away from recipes that add too much sugar or rely on fruits canned in heavy syrup:
- Mixed Salad with Pears and Raisins
- Watermelon Salad with Cucumber and Mint
- Ben & Mona's Tangy Grapefruit Salad
- Diabetic Apple Salad