Increasing your veggie intake is one of the best ways you can improve your health! By increasing your vegetable consumption, you get more fiber, minerals, and critical nutrients in your diet, leading to better weight management and reduced food intake. And don’t think you need to go vegan or vegetarian to get more veggies. All you have to do is reduce meat intake slightly and replace it with veggies—you’ll see a difference right away! Here are some easy things you can do today:
Make a No-Beef Pasta
Instead of making your pasta with a ground beef Bolognese sauce, try using only a small amount of meat—something like chorizo or spicy sausage—to bring the meaty richness to your sauce. Then, to give it that thick texture you love, bring in some of your favorite veggies. Zucchini is an easy one to add to pasta sauce, as it absorbs the saucy flavor beautifully. Red, green, and yellow bell peppers also mix nicely into a good veggie-heavy tomato sauce, or you can opt for a few grated carrots to really increase the fiber content!
Cook More Quinoa
Quinoa is one of the best sources of protein on the planet. Not only is it 100% whole grain, but it contains no additional fats and no unnecessary carbs. You’ll find that it delivers just the right amount of carbs and protein, making it the most balanced grain you can eat. Put it on salads, eat it with steamed veggies, or add it into a broth—however you eat it, you’ll find it’s absolutely delicious.
Make it a Meaty Salad
If you’re trying to reduce meat intake, you’ll find that salads can be your best friend. You can make your salad with all your favorite veggies, a good dressing, and some nuts and seeds for added nutrition. Then, top it with a small half-sized portion of the meat of your choice—steak, grilled chicken, fish, or pork. Not only is it an absolutely delicious meal, but it’s one that is guaranteed to improve your health thanks to the high fiber content of your veggies.
Soup it Up
Soup can be an amazing way to get critical nutrients while still enjoying a light meal. Take chicken soup, for example. When you boil the chicken bones to extract the rich broth, you get a lot of important minerals from the bones. However, you don’t actually have to use a lot of chicken to make the soup—after all, it’s the veggies that really make the soup healthy. Add in a small handful of soup noodles, and you’ve got one heck of a delicious meal. Soups are a good way to increase your veggie intake and reduce meat intake easily while still enjoying your food.
Try Pizza or Flatbread
Both pizza and flatbread can be made with any ingredients: tomato sauce and cheese, Greek yoghurt dip, even curries. Top it with a little bit of meat—your choice, depending on what type of dish you want to make—and add in plenty of veggies to bring in the fiber. You’ll find it’s an absolutely delightful way to eat more veggies while cutting back on the meat content of your diet.
Cut Meat One Meal
Finally, if you’re trying to go for less meat, why not try for one vegetarian meal a day? Make one meal that has no meat, then enjoy regular-sized portions of meat the other two meals. It’s an easy way to ensure you’re not overdoing it on meat and getting a healthy, balanced veggie-forward diet!