By Anika Rouf.
Have you ever told yourself you’ll start from tomorrow because you had a slip-up today?
Many find it hard to make healthy changes to our diet because we tend to have an ‘all or nothing’ approach. Getting stuck in this approach often results in guilt and yo-yo dieting where you might yourself flipping from restriction to binge eating or inactivity to over-doing at the gym. Rather than wanting to change everything all at once, consider working towards making a small change that you would be able to sustain in the long run.
One of the food groups that many Australians struggle with is eating enough vegetables in their diet. Vegetables are important as they are packed with nutrients (vitamins and minerals), as well as antioxidants and fibre. Unfortunately, only 4% of Australian adults are eating the recommended five serves of vegetables per day. Consuming vegetables can help with maintaining a healthy weight, lowering cholesterol and blood pressure, as well as protect you against chronic diseases (i.e. type II diabetes, heart disease, stroke and cancer). Moreover, recent research suggests a link between a diet and mental health which means that consuming a diet rich in fruits and vegetables may have benefits for mental health (i.e. better mood and reduced risk of depression).
National Nutrition Week is Nutrition Australia’s healthy eating awareness week which runs from 14th to 20th October. This week is all about encouraging Australians to increase their vegetable intake. Tryfor5 is an annual campaign developed by Nutrition Australia that runs during National Nutrition Week, to encourage Australians to consume the recommended five serves of vegetables per day. The theme for this year is “Small Change, Big Gains” to help you focus on making simple and small changes in your diet.
As studies have shown that Australians want a simpler approach to cooking along with practical tips and advice on improving the healthiness of meals, the 2018 Tryfor5 campaign has transformed some of Australia's favourite recipes by adding more vegetables.
This National Nutrition Week, remember to make small changes for big health gains and turn it into a long-lasting habit!