According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), fewer than one in 10 Americans eat levels originally recommended by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) MyPlate, which for a 2,000-calorie diet, is 2 cups of fruit and 2 1/2 cups of vegetables a day. More recently, the USDA's MyPlate graphic encourages people to fill half their plate with fruits and vegetables.
Vegetables and fruits are nutritional powerhouses, loaded with things our cells need to function properly, such as protein, vitamins (A, C, E, many B vitamins, D, K), calcium, potassium, and trace minerals. Plus vegetables and fruits are loaded with fiber to help clean out our intestinal system so that foods don't sit in there rotting and decaying (which can lead to bad things). Trying to stay healthy without eating vegetables and fruit is like trying to run a hospital without any health care professionals (doctors, nurses, technicians, etc.). Running a hospital by people who have absolutely no medical training is the equivalent to eating empty calories for your body - they're in there taking up space, they're not qualified to treat sick and injured people, and they're crowding out those who are qualified. So those who come to that hospital in need of urgent care may not survive. Would you want to go to that hospital for treatment? Running a hospital by trained medical professionals is the equivalent to eating fruits and vegetables for your body - they're efficient, they're qualified, and they know how to save lives.
We all know that we should eat more vegetables and fruits, yet knowing and doing are not always one and the same. The delicious green smoothie I drank this morning had at least 2 1/2 cups of fresh vegetables and 1 cup of fresh fruit. Add to that the orange I ate while making the smoothie, and I met the original USDA MyPlate recommendation with just breakfast. My point is that it's really not that difficult to eat enough vegetables and fruits. What would it take to get you to eat more vegetables and fruits?