Most people probably need to be eating more fruits and vegetables. In fact, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that about 90% of Americans don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables despite the numerous health benefits.
Researchers have found that 7.8 million people worldwide could avoid an early death if they eat 10 servings of fruits and vegetables per day. Fall provides a great time to up your servings of fruits and vegetables.
The Autumn harvest includes a variety of root vegetables and crisp fruits to help you create comforting meals to enjoy heading into the cooler months. Here are some fall fruits and vegetables, and how they can benefit your health according to EverydayHealth.com:
1. Blueberries: Although most might think of blueberries as a summer fruit, they contain disease-fighting phytochemicals. Blueberris contain almost 1.8 grams (g) of fiber per half cup, which is 6% your daily value (DV), according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
2. Apples: A medium apple has almost 4.4 g of fiber, which gives you nearly 16 percent of your DV in 95 calories, according to the USDA. Eating the skin increases the vitamin C you are getting (per medium apple, you get 8.4 mg, or about 9% of the DV).
3. Pears: Offering heart-friendly fiber, pears contains almost 8 mg of vitamin C (about 9% of your DV) and 206 mg of potassium (which is about 4% of your DV), in a medium pear, according to the USDA.
4. Winter Squash: Any squash harvested in the fall is considered “winter squash” and is packed with vitamin A. With 1 cup of butternut squash, you get 745 mcg, which is almost 83% of your DV, making it an excellent source.
5. Pumpkin: A cup of cubed raw pumpkin gives you 3,600 mcg of beta-carotene, according to the USDA. You’ll also get 494 mcg of vitamin A in total, per cup, which is about 55% of your DV.
6. Leeks: With the flexibility of being used from breakfast casseroles to lasagna, leeks can help fend off disease because of their anti-inflammatory properties.