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Published on July 13, 2021

Eat Your Summer Fruits and Veggies

Eat Your Summer Fruits and Veggies | Cone Health

We all know that we should eat lots of fruit and vegetables. What better time of year than summer when there are so many fresh and locally sourced options at farmer's markets and local grocery stores? Margaret "Maggie" May, RN, RD, CDE with Cone Health Nutrition and Diabetes Education Services shares the benefits of fresh produce and some great ways to prepare them.

Maggie's Pro Tips for Eating Your Fruits and Veggies

  • Each day, aim for 3 servings of vegetables and 2 servings of fruits that are rich in color.
  • Choose locally sourced and in-season vegetables to make sure they're fresh, tasty and packed full of nutrient value. 
  • Choose colorful fruits and vegetables, which are rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. These nutrients can nourish your body's health in many ways - for example, antioxidants can help you decrease inflammation in the body. 
  • Plan to eat at least 2 vegetarian meals each week using your potatoes, your greens and other veggies and fruits. 

Late Spring and Early Summer Fruits and Veggies

The following in-season vegetables contain lots of fiber, which is especially important for your health as you get older:

  • Green and leafy vegetables
  • Broccoli
  • Asparagus
  • Cucumber
  • Squash
  • Zucchini
  • Green beans

And the following delicious fruits can be eaten as dessert instead of pies, cakes and cookies:

  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Cherries
  • Blackberries

Onions are a root crop that is also ripe this season. One of the best reasons to eat onions is for their flavor - we can use them in our cooking instead of salt to decrease our sodium intake while still having delicious seasoning for our vegetables. 

Mid-Summer Fruits and Veggies

Green beans remain in-season during mid-summer - they're joined by the following healthy vegetables: 

  • Tomatoes are rich in color and are high in vitamin c, potassium and antioxidants.
  • Beets are rich in color and are known for helping to lower blood pressure. They taste great oven-roasted!
  • Eggplants are a rich source of vitamins and minerals. Combine them with tomatoes to make a nice entree dish. 

Mid-summer fruits that make great snacks and desserts include:

  • Peaches
  • Watermelon
  • Cantaloupe
  • Honeydew

Potatoes also come into season during mid-summer. While they are a starchy vegetable, potatoes are also high in healthy potassium and fiber and contain a small amount of protein. Roast them up and enjoy them as an accompaniment to your entree.

Late Summer and Early Fall Fruits and Veggies

Green beans, beets and tomatoes all remain in-season during late summer and early fall. New in-season veggies include bell peppers and okra, the second of which is high in fiber and can be cooked with other vegetables to make a tasty entree!

Melons also stay fresh and in-season during this time of year, and are they great sources of vitamin c and potassium. Other fruits that are available this season include apples, which have lots of fiber and antioxidants, and pears.

Sweet potatoes also come into season and are high in potassium and fiber. They can help us regulate blood sugar, so if you like the taste of sweet potatoes, use them as an alternative to regular potatoes!

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