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Does “5 A Day” Really Make a Difference?

August 15, 2022

Does “5 A Day” Really Make a Difference?

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Do you ever wonder if health recommendations are merely the latest fad or if the benefits really will outlast the trend? While many focus on what not to put into your body, it’s just as important to focus on what you do allow into your body. The idea of “5 A Day” is just that: five daily servings of fruits and veggies to help you be proactive about a healthy life today and in the future.

What Is "5 A Day?"

"5 A Day" is a public health campaign based on the World Health Organization’s recommendation to eat at least 400 grams (or roughly 5 servings) of fruits and vegetables each day, with an ideal breakdown of 2 servings of fruit and 3 servings of vegetables. It was established in the early 1990s and is still relevant today, especially considering that only 1 in 10 American adults meet this minimum requirement.

Why "5 A Day?"

Making fruits and veggies a vital part of your diet has benefits galore! Fruits and vegetables contain vitamins, minerals, and fiber that not only help you stay fit, but when paired with a healthy diet, they can even help prevent non-communicable diseases – including lowering your risk of heart disease, stroke, and cancer to name a few.

In comparing people who followed the "5 A Day" guidelines with those who ate less than the recommended serving amount, scientists saw huge differences in major chronic diseases. Those who ate "5 A Day" had a 10% lower risk of dying from cancer, a 12% lower risk of dying from both heart disease and stroke, and a 35% lower risk of dying from respiratory disease. Of the two million individuals studied, there was a 13% lower risk of dying from all causes – just from eating five servings of fruits and vegetables a day!

What Counts and What Doesn’t?

While following "5 A Day," it’s crucial to remember that not all fruits and veggies are created equal. Not only is it important to eat a variety of fruits and veggies to receive the different health benefits, but some veggies don’t even make the cut:

  • Potatoes
  • Yams
  • Cassava

Although these veggies are still good for you and can provide energy, they are generally starch sources and don’t offer the same benefits as other veggies.

Note that supplements do not give you the same benefits as eating real whole fruits and veggies, either. They do not count toward your "5 A Day."

Where Should You Start?

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, here’s some good news: Any addition of fruits and veggies to your diet will be a good thing. The other good news is that if raw baby carrots don’t get you excited, fruits and veggies come served in a variety of ways for you to enjoy.

A group of women drinking the best fruit smoothies and veggie smoothies at a table at Smoothie King

Fresh, frozen, canned, dried, and even fruit and veggie smoothies all count toward your five daily servings. When you have the time, you can prep fresh and dried foods at home. When you are busy, you can simply pick up a fruit smoothie near you in between errands to maintain both your healthy and busy lifestyle.

How Can We Help?

We want to help everyone become the healthiest versions of themselves. Part of that vision stems from eating clean fruits and veggies. With the best fruit and veggie smoothies at Smoothie King, you can enjoy eating something both healthy and yummy (without any of the harmful additives). Whether you like the sweetness of berries or the fresh flavor of a spinach blend, we can help you reach your five servings while also giving you variety in the types of fruits and veggies you eat every day.

On the road to a healthy future? Find a veggie or fruit smoothie near you!

As you try to add fruits and veggies into your diet, you’ll see that it’s a lot easier than you think. Just this simple addition can make a huge difference for your long-term health.

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