Benefits of fruit and vegetables


Benefits of fruit and vegetables

2 min read

Experts recommend that we should all eat a balanced diet that contains a colourful variety of plant foods. This helps us achieve the right balance of nutrients (including vitamins, minerals and fibre) and plant bioactives, such as polyphenols. These support optimal health and well-being. 

Fruit and vegetables are naturally high in water and low in energy, so they are a great way to add vital nutrients to our diets without substantially increasing the calories we eat.

Experts around the world advise that we should aim to eat at least five portions of fruit and vegetables daily. A small glass of 100% fruit juice complements your intake of fruit and counts as one portion in several countries, such as the UK.

What is 100% fruit juice?

By law, anything labelled as '100% fruit juice' contains no added sugars, preservatives, sweeteners, flavours or colours. It's simply a drink made by squeezing fruit and can be an enjoyable, convenient way to provide essential nutrients our body needs, such as vitamin C, potassium and folate.

What do these nutrients do for the body?

  • Vitamin C contributes to normal immune function as well as normal collagen formation, which is important for healthy bones, skin and teeth.

  • Potassium supports normal blood pressure and normal muscle function, as well as the normal functioning of the nervous system.

  • Folate contributes to a reduction in tiredness and fatigue and supports normal immune function.

A small glass of 100% fruit juice (150 ml) provides 62 calories, just 3% of the daily calorie recommendation for an adult. 100% juices don't contain more calories than the equivalent whole fruit but do provide similar levels of vitamins, minerals and plant bioactive compounds.

Let's eat more fruit and veg!

If, like most adults in Europe, you're eating fewer than three portions of fruit and vegetables daily, aim to add one or two more portions and get closer to the recommended 5-a-day. If you are already eating five portions, try to increase this to seven by following our tips:

  1. Include a small glass of 100% fruit juice or a piece of fruit with your usual breakfast;

  2. Save money and boost your vegetable intake by taking a packed salad to work;

  3. Keep a supply of dried fruit at work as a quick, healthy snack. Dried apricots, pears, mango and prunes are all delicious choices and are high in fibre;

  4. A banana or small carton of 100% fruit juice can be a refreshing post-exercise snack, providing energy, vitamin C and potassium;

  5. When having a special meal or party, why not start with some healthy appetizers such as cold soup shots, or carrot and pepper sticks with hummus or yogurt dips;

  6. Update favourite recipes by adding vegetables and beans to soups and stews. Frozen vegetables are a useful back-up in the kitchen;

  7. Eat seasonally to ensure that you are getting a wide variety of fruit and vegetables. Try farmers markets, ethnic supermarkets, and home-delivered seasonal vegetable boxes to discover new tastes.

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