Why you really need your Five-a-Day

Fruit, as we all know, is packed with the vitamins and minerals our bodies and minds need to function properly. It can also help to boost our immune system and ward off diseases, and provide us with the steady supply of energy we need to live fulfilling lives. Moreover, fruit can also be an important ally for those trying to lose weight, supplying essential nutrients without adding any unnecessary fats.

The experts are forever extoling the virtues of eating your five-a-day, but consuming five items of different fruit is a considerable undertaking, and to be perfectly honest, it can be quite expensive too, so here’s a little extra motivation to help you hit that magic number.

 

  • Supplements are no substitute for the real thing

Sales of supplements have soared in recent years, but the truth is that there is no substitute for the real thing. There is definitely a place for vitamin or mineral supplements in our diets, but they should only be used to fill small nutrient gaps, such as vitamin D supplements, and not to take the place of a healthy diet.

The fact is that whole foods contain more varied nutrients than supplements and deliver them in a more balanced way. Interestingly, research has shown that fruit and vegetables that contain certain vitamins and minerals can reduce the risk of diseases like heart disease, cancer and other illnesses, while supplements that contain the same minerals or vitamins alone cannot make the same claims.

 

  • Five-a-day can hugely improve your health

‘You are what you eat’, it’s an old adage that rings increasingly true the more we understand about diet and the benefits of the vitamins and minerals certain foods contain. The truth is that the benefits of eating plenty of fruit and vegetables can never be replaced, and doing so over a sustained period of time can have a marked improvement on your health and the proper functioning of your body.

Fruits have been proven to help prevent a whole range of health conditions, from heat stroke and skin disorders, to high blood pressure, diabetes and cancer. To get the maximum health benefit, you should favour fruit that is ripe, raw and fresh. Cooked and processed fruit can still be good for you, but in many cases the health benefits are reduced.

 

  • Fruit can improve your performance at work

Research has been carried out into how eating certain foods can improve or reduce productivity and the ability of people to concentrate at work. Research from a company called Fruitful Office has found that making a supply of fresh fruit available at work can boost employee’s productivity by more than 10 percent. This is down to the high levels of fibre found in many fruits, which slows digestion and causes energy in the food to be released into the body more slowly. Bananas, apples, pears and raspberries are all excellent sources.
What benefits have you experienced from eating more fruit? Please share your experiences with our readers in the comments section below.

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