THE RECOMMENDED DAILY AMOUNT OF FRUIT AND VEGETABLES???
The five main food groups are vegetables, fruits, grains, protein foods and dairy. Intake recommendations for each group are based on age, gender and level of physical activity.
Fill half of each mealtime plate with fruits and vegetables.
The vegetable group is divided into five subgroups of nutritionally similar vegetables. Dark green vegetables include broccoli and dark leafy greens such as spinach and kale. Corn, potatoes, plantains and green peas are starchy vegetables, while lentils and mature legumes are in the beans and peas subgroup, and tomatoes, red peppers, sweet potatoes and carrots are part of the red and orange vegetables subgroup. Cabbage, beets, avocado, celery and mushrooms are some of the vegetables categorized as “other vegetables.
Moderately active women and men through the age of 50 require 2 1/2 cups and 3 cups of vegetables per day, respectively, while adults over the age of 50 should reduce their daily intake by 1/2 cup. In general, 1 cup of raw or cooked vegetables counts as 1 cup toward your total daily intake.
While the fruit food group is not divided into specific subgroups, the USDA does draw special attention to melons and berries, such as cantaloupe, watermelon, blueberries and strawberries, which generally rank as some of the most nutrient-dense fruits. Widely consumed fruits include bananas, grapes, apples, pears, oranges, grapefruit and dried fruits such as raisins and prunes. Freshly extracted fruit juice or commercially prepared 100 percent fruit juice are also included in the fruit group, but sweetened fruit juice is not. USDA guidelines give equal regard to fruits that are fresh, frozen, canned, dried or dehydrated.
Moderately active women through the age of 30 and moderately active men of all ages require 2 cups of fruit per day, while women over the age of 30 should reduce their daily intake to 1 1/2 cups, according to the USDA. A 1-cup serving of raw or cooked fruit generally counts as 1 cup of fruit toward total daily intake. An 8-ounce glass of 100 percent fruit juice also counts as 1 cup of fruit. Smaller servings of dried fruit, however, count toward more of your daily intake because dried fruit is significantly higher in calories and nutrients. A 1/4-cup serving of raisins, for example, counts as 1/2 cup of fruit in daily intake terms, just as 1/2 cup of dried apricots counts as 1 cup of fruit.
POTTING GOOD QUALITY INGREDIENTS FOR ALL YOUR PRESERVES.
Lots of supermarkets are shelved with good quality fruits and vegetables as well as our local markets which are stocked well with fabulously lush fruits and vegetables at a very cheap price, maybe going up a little when they are not in season or it is a special occasion such as Valentines Day when their prices shoot up! Going to buy your fruits and vegetables at the end of a working day is a good idea as the stall holders want to clear certain items and you get them a little cheaper still. I would be careful not to buy and use too over ripe fruits for your preserves as this can alter the shelf life a great deal and spoil a lot quicker. I have heard many takes on preserves over the years one that sticks in my mind are STRAWBERRIES and that they are best for jam when they are really mushy and over ripe....this is not so as I have found that strawberries are good for jam making when they are very red a good bright colour with no mushy softening, quite a bit of firmness to them but you are still able to mash them up easily with a hand masher. This gives a rich ruby red colour and tastes amazing and stays in perfect condition stored in the fridge once opened for at least 6months, in total some jams can keep upto 12 months if stored correctly......HAPPY JAM MAKING!!!
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