Fruits can be very expensive and I find sometimes rather bland compared to the fruits I was used to eating growing up in the Philippines.
Gwyneth Paltrow would have approved of our microbiotic diet. We ate lots of Grains and fruits, fresh from trees in the backyard or from our farm. I remember climbing trees to get fruits, it was that fresh!
Anyway, I do like to eat fruits, sadly it is not part of my everyday diet but I do try to eat fruits and vegetables during the week. Life is so hectic, everything is from a can, a jar or even from take-aways.
I must say I do miss eating fresh fruits, that I had four large oranges in one sitting just the other day, which brought me sensitive teeth. Not nice.
Below is advice from the National Health Service on how to have your 5 a day servings of fruits and vegetables.
5 A DAY fruit portions
Small-sized fresh fruit
One portion is two or more small fruit, for example two plums, two satsumas, two kiwi fruit, three apricots, six lychees, seven strawberries or 14 cherries.
Medium-sized fresh fruit
One portion is one piece of fruit, such as one apple, banana, pear, orange or nectarine.
Large fresh fruit
One portion is half a grapefruit, one slice of papaya, one slice of melon (5cm slice), one large slice of pineapple or two slices of mango (5cm slices).
A portion of dried fruit is around 30g. This is about one heaped tablespoon of raisins, currants or sultanas, one tablespoon of mixed fruit, two figs, three prunes or one handful of dried banana chips.
Tinned fruit in natural juice
One portion is roughly the same quantity of fruit that you would eat for a fresh portion, such as two pear or peach halves, six apricot halves or eight segments of tinned grapefruit.
5 A DAY vegetable portions
Two broccoli spears or four heaped tablespoons of cooked kale, spinach, spring greens or green beans count as one portion.
Three heaped tablespoons of cooked vegetables, such as carrots, peas or sweetcorn, or eight cauliflower florets count as one portion.
Three sticks of celery, a 5cm piece of cucumber, one medium tomato or seven cherry tomatoes count as one portion.
Tinned and frozen vegetables
Roughly the same quantity as you would eat for a fresh portion. For example, three heaped tablespoons of tinned or frozen carrots, peas or sweetcorn count as one portion each. Choose those canned in water, with no added salt or sugar.
Pulses and beans
Three heaped tablespoons of baked beans, haricot beans, kidney beans, cannellini beans, butter beans or chickpeas count as one portion each. Remember, however much you eat, beans and pulses count as a maximum of one portion a day.
Potatoes don’t count towards your 5 A DAY. This is the same for yams, cassava and plantain too. They are classified nutritionally as a starchy food, because when eaten as part of a meal they are usually used in place of other sources of starch, such as bread, rice or pasta. Although they don’t count towards your 5 A DAY, potatoes do play an important role in your diet as a starchy food. You can learn more in 5 A DAY: what counts?
5 A DAY in juices and smoothies
One 150ml glass of unsweetened 100% fruit or vegetable juice can count as a portion. But only one glass counts, so further glasses of juice don’t count towards your total 5 A DAY portions.
A smoothie containing all the edible pulped fruit or vegetable may count as more than one 5 A DAY portion, but this depends on the quantity of fruits or vegetables or juice used, as well as how the smoothie has been made.
For example, for a single smoothie to qualify as being two portions, it must contain either:
at least 80g of one variety of whole fruit and/or vegetable and at least 150ml of a different variety of 100% fruit and/or vegetable juice, or
at least 80g of one variety of whole fruit and/or vegetable and at least 80g of another variety of whole fruit and/or vegetable
Sugars are released from fruit when it’s juiced or blended, and these sugars can cause damage to teeth. Whole fruits are less likely to cause tooth decay because the sugars are contained within the structure of the fruit.
5 A DAY and ready-made foods
Fruit and vegetables contained in shop-bought ready-made foods can also count toward your 5 A DAY.
Always read the label. Some ready-made foods contain high levels of fat, salt and sugar, so only have them occasionally or in small amounts as part of a healthy balanced diet. You can find out more in Food labels.