A pound a day of fruits and veggies

I am reading Michael Pollan’s newest book, In Defense of Food, which is very interesting. He gives you some simple rules to live by and they make so much sense. Like, don’t buy anything with ingredients you can’t pronounce or that your great-grandmother wouldn’t recognize. I love that advice! He also mentions that cultures with people who eat a pound of fruits and veggies a day live longer than those who don’t.

So we have started the pound-a-day idea in my house. My 5-year old daughter is hooked. I told her a pound is basically 4 apples or maybe 2 apples, 2 carrots, 2 broccoli florets and a plum, or maybe 1 apple, 1 orange, and 2 beets. And this actually became a car game the other day where we kept coming up with food combinations that equaled what we assumed to be a pound. Of course I have no idea if any of that adds up to a pound, but I do know that what we think is a pound of food, is a very manageable amount to eat in a day, even for a child.

Surprisingly, my daughter is really into it and is now reminding me of her scorecard. She has the figure 4 in her head so she’ll say to me, like today, “I had my pound today-1 apple, 1 handful of baby carrots, 1 tangerine and 5 asparagus stalks.” I am so impressed with her, she’s really into it, and it actually kind of is a practical way of making sure you get your fruits and veggies. We spend so much time counting calories, why not just count fruits and veggies to make sure we get enough for our bodies? Chances are, if you are eating the fruits and veggies, then you aren’t eating something else and that something else might be junk.

Just so you other moms of picky eaters aren’t envious out there, thinking I am super mom with my daughter who eats like champ and actually listens to me, let me remind you of my picky eater 3-year old. He was so tired today by dinner time that he was just crying as I was preparing his dinner, frantically. I didn’t know what to do as I tried to hold him on my hip and drop asparagus into a pot of hot water. So I put him down for a second and noticed it was quiet after a few minutes. I wondered what was going on, turned around to see what he was doing and found him with his hand literally in the sugar bowl with the hugest smile on his face. Ugh!

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