How to Trick Yourself Into Eating More Vegetables

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How to Trick Yourself Into Eating More Vegetables

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How to Trick Yourself Into Eating More Vegetables

While fruits and vegetables can be a hassle to sneak into the diet, it’s vegetables that many people refuse to eat. This is largely because of the unpleasant tastes or smells that are often associated with vegetables like kale, broccoli, and brussel sprouts.

Why Don’t People Like Vegetables?

In general, many people find vegetables to be bitter tasting, which may even signal a warning to the brain that the plant is poisonous. On the other hand, sweets activate reward centers in the brain and are associated with pleasant things. This is one reason why many people prefer fruits over vegetables and why so many children and adults avoid vegetables altogether.

Some people have an easier time eating vegetable based foods such as vegetarian patties or hot dogs. Even though these food items are made with natural vegetable products such as dried vegetables, vegetable oils, and carrageenan, many people who eat these foods can’t stomach the idea of eating vegetables on their own.

What Happens If I Don’t Eat Vegetables?

Sadly, avoiding vegetables can come with some negative consequences including missing out on important vitamins and minerals. In addition, vegetables are loaded with fiber which keeps the digestive system healthy and functioning properly. Inadequate fiber intake can lead to bloating, weight gain, uncontrolled blood sugar, and even heart disease. Vegetables are also known to help keep the body young and the skin youthful.

Even eating a simple vegetable like broccoli, one of the most hated on earth, can create a huge impact on a person’s health. In addition to fiber, broccoli contains iron, potassium, calcium, several important B-Vitamins, and many more vitamins including A, C, E, and K. This vegetable also keeps bones strong and wards off bone mineral depletion and conditions like osteoporosis. On top of this, some research even suggests that vegetables like broccoli contain anti-cancer properties.

While you could take a multivitamin to make up for your lack of vegetable consumption, you still won’t be getting the fiber you need or the phytochemicals and properties that make vegetables so beneficial. In addition, researchers don’t necessarily know for sure how the vitamin and mineral bioavailability for multivitamins measures up to that of real vegetables and other natural foods.

How Can I Get Myself to Eat More Vegetables?

The hard part isn’t convincing people that they need to eat vegetables - the hard part is getting them to eat them. Adverse, bitter tastes and traumatic childhood memories can keep people from eating vegetables throughout their entire adult lives, and it can train children to stubbornly refuse vegetables from an early age. However, the negative health consequences of skipping vegetables have driven scientists to find ways of making vegetable consumption easier and more palatable.

One of the findings that researchers discovered was that people can eat and even enjoy the taste of vegetables with just a little bit of tweaking. In particular, adding a few grains of sugar to bitter vegetables can enhance the taste of vegetables like kale and brussel sprouts. This can make eating vegetables more palatable and even enjoyable for people who struggle to get past the bitterness. This technique might be especially beneficial for children.

Another trick is to get lots of exposure to vegetable consumption and to be influenced into good habits. This means following less cake and junk food makers on social media and following more healthy eaters. Since conforming to the behaviors of people around us is adaptive and rewarding, our eating is also strongly influenced by social context. This means that if we make healthy eating our new norm in all aspects, including social media, it becomes easier to eat vegetables and make better food choices.

The Next Step

Now that you know why you need to eat vegetables, it’s time to ditch junk food social media accounts and start following healthy eaters. Also, begin taking small steps to integrate vegetables into your diet, even if it means sprinkling a little bit of sugar onto your brussel sprouts. Eating an adequate amount of vegetables will keep you healthier and happier in the long-run, and that will be better than any junk food you could eat with your mouth (or your eyes!).


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