Monday, April 13, 2015

4 Ways I Coax Myself Into Eating Fruits and Veggies



Has anyone ever noticed that they are healthier eaters when they are working versus when they are staying at home? When I was working at my office jobs, I packed mostly healthy snacks and if I brought any sweet treats I would portion them out to a small amount. I only brought enough food to satisfy my hunger and no more. And I don't like buying junk from vending machines or overpriced snacks from food courts, so what I brought was all I would get. [Unless someone brought doughnuts or if there was free chips and salsa in the breakroom...]

Fast forward to now, I have what seems like an unlimited supply of snacks within 10 feet of myself at home. We don't buy anything terrible, but there's always some sort of crackers, nuts, and baked goods. It's like they are always calling my name. With that being said, we buy tons of fruit. Tons. Mainly because we have a toddler that could live off of it. So I have the constant battle between should I go for the banana bread or the apple? The cinnamon-sugar almonds or the watermelon slices? Tortilla chips or celery?



I realized that the main barrier for myself is convenience. Naturally when we want a snack, we're looking for the quickest, easiest way to satisfy our hunger. But what often happens is these "quick and easy" snacks end up being high in fat or sugar. And then we have no desire to eat things that are nutritionally good for us. I find this especially for fruits and veggies.

BUT there are ways I coax myself into eating them and I will share with you so you can too! It all comes down to making them more convenient and enticing.

1. The obvious; don't buy the crappy snacks in the first place. 

Sometimes I'm really craving a cupcake. And when that happens, I will buy a single one from the bakery instead of buying/baking a whole batch. That craving will go away after one cupcake and if I have an entire batch I am stuck with 24 cupcakes that I'll end up eating 'just because'. So, by not having this junk in the house, when we're hungry and need a pick me up there is no temptation. And it now becomes more work to go out and get something unhealthy. 


2. Take the fruits and veggies out of all their plastic (or paper) bags right away and wash them after you get home from the grocery store.

If anything needs to be peeled or sliced, like a kiwi or pineapple, cut it up right away. I throw everything in huge bowls of water with a Tbsp of vinegar in each and soak for a couple minutes. Then I rinse off with cool water and pat dry. Now you should have everything ready to go. Even better; you can portion out in small containers for work. Make this as convenient as possible.



3. Have your fruits and vegetables visible in an aesthetically pleasing way. 

Whether they're in your fridge or on the countertop, put them in pretty baskets or containers. For the ones in the fridge, place them in the front and on the top shelves, so they're easy to reach. I don't usually cover with a lid unless I have to cut open an avocado or something.


I use mason jars and random bowls/containers, but you can buy special fruit/veggie storage containers like this Prepworks Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Keeper from Amazon or this one from zulily.



For fruits and veggies that sit out on the counter, use them as a center piece, or at the very least, out in the open as much as you can. Organize the colors in a way that makes them all pop. Do whatever you have to do to entice yourself.



4. Tell yourself to be grateful.

Remind yourself of people who physically cannot purchase fresh fruits and vegetables. There's people who can't afford them and there's people who live in extremely rural areas that simply don't have them available in stores near them. Some people out there would gladly take on your problem of fruits and veggies not being "convenient" enough. Feel lucky that you have the luxury to eat them. Yum!


Now Let's Hear From You!

What's your biggest barrier for eating fruits and veggies?

24 comments:

  1. Great tips! We eat a lot of fruits and veggies around here. I find that when I start to buy the junk that is all we want to eat, but when we have the healthy things readily available to kids can't seem to get enough of them. Now that summer is coming and I can plant my garden we will be getting even more veggies.

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    1. Thanks! I can't wait to start a garden this year!

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  2. Good idea's. I always buy the snacks the kids like and it can get tempting!

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    1. I know! I feel bad saying "no" but I end up being glad I did.

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  3. These are great tips! I'm fortunate that my kiddos are pretty good about eating fruits and veggies. And hopefully with our garden going this year we'll get even more fresh veggies into our diet.

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    1. You are lucky your kids like vegetables!! My 2 year old could eat fruit all day but won't touch her veggies. Maybe someday!

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  4. These are such awesome tips! I agree with you 100% that eating healthy was soooo much easier when I was working Full Time. Luckily, I am the only one in the house who is a "reluctant" fruit & veggie muncher, so we always have a ton around. The biggest way I've been able to implement more fruits & veggies is to make them into smoothies and always add in a ton of spinach. They definitely help to keep the sweet cravings down!

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    1. I love adding spinach to smoothies! I can never taste it either. Win-win!

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  5. Great post. I also feel like I eat much healthier when I'm at work vs. at home. I'm on mat leave right now and I always find my self snacking a lot. I need the routine. One of the things that I do to make sure I get my fruits and veggies is make a smoothie every morning. I'm so used to having the smoothie that I actually feel gross if I skip it that day. It also makes me feel better about cheating during the day :)

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    1. Thanks! And I know what you mean by feeling "gross" if you skip it.

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  6. I rarely take the time to eat right though I absolutely LOVE my fruits and veggies. I will definitely be applying some of these tips in hopes of integrating more fresh produce in my daily diet. Thank you for the great ideas!

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    1. You're welcome! Thanks for stopping by!

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  7. Great tips here! My biggest 'trick' is not buying junk for sure

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    1. It really is a 'trick'! So hard to not buy junk food at all.

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  8. Your tip for washing fruits and veggies right away is perfect! That would definitely help me. Thanks for the tips!

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  9. The biggest thing I do to make sure we eat our veggies and fruits is to put them where I can see them. Either on the counter in the kitchen or on a shelf at eye level in the fridge. If I don't see them, we don't eat them!

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    1. Yeah! It's painful to have to throw away produce that didn't get eaten because we forgot about it!

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  10. What a great post full of easy reminders! I absolutely agree ... if you don't buy junky snacks in the first place, there's no temptation to munch on them all week long. Problem solved! And I've definitely noticed that if I take a moment to leave a big, gorgeous bowl of grapes close at hand, or to cut up a plate of apple slices, my family noshes on those healthy snacks and they're gone in a flash! :D Definitely pinning this to share! ~Shelley

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  11. I've been trying to get back to eating healthy. My biggest problem is of course number one, not buying junk in the first place. I'm going to try some of your tips and see if I have any luck. Great post!

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    1. Thanks Yanique! Not buying junk food is definitely easier said than done.

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  12. YES, I find it harder to eat well now being a stay-at-home mom than I did when I was working. I love your tip about making the good stuff visible and attractive. That does seem to be my biggest problem. Everything is all stuffed down in that crisper thing, not ready at all. I def just need to make it EASIER. This is great. Thanks for linking up at MeetUp Monday - Hope to see you there again this week!

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  13. I agree for sure about making them visible and cleaning them right away for "Ready to eat fruit!"

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