Did You Eat Your Vegetables Today?

(*Or since it’s early in the AM, yesterday?)

My mom’s a huge fan of making a big deal when she doesn’t see me eating enough vegetables during my dinner. Last night I had microwave vegetable Samosas (which are, like they say, filled with vegetables… or if you want to be technical, peas and potatoes) for dinner out of laziness and the pure desire to fill my mouth with an easy Indian inspired appetizer.

After asking what was inside the Samosas, my mom tried to emphasize there were no vegetables (um what are peas? I had to show her one, I don’t think she heard me the first time…) and jokingly ask if they were 5 servings of vegetables inside. Um, no, clearly there aren’t.

“Do you eat five serves of vegetables a day?”

I know that eating fruits and vegetables is ideal. I know they’ve bumped up the serving suggestions from 3-5 servings to 5-9. I know that. Every day I struggle to remember (and pretend to want to eat) vegetables and fruit instead of a bag of Baked Lays that seems like it’ll satiate my hunger (and salt cravings) better than a handful of baby carrots. Even in spite of all of this, when asked a direct question that challenges my eating habits (especially when this comes from my mother) my natural response is,

“I don’t know ANYONE, except you, who eats that many in a day.”

So why is she challenging me to be the exception? Why isn’t she giving my brother a hard time? She claims she “can’t be responsible” for him, as if she can be more responsible for  for me? My dad doesn’t eat five servings, and she is the one who usually feeds him. Why pick on me?

The truth is, I don’t want to eat all of those fruits and vegetables because I am told that I need to. (If I’m going to eat them, it’s because I want to, not because anyone else wants me to).  I don’t want to be told that I need to do anything. Maybe it’s because I never had some stupid rebel stage in high school, but it never fails to aggravate me when anyone attempts to remind me what I *need* to do.

Do you eat 5-9 servings of  fruits and vegetables a day? What about THREE servings? Some days I can do that like cake. Other days, well hey, they just seem to slip by.



4 thoughts on “Did You Eat Your Vegetables Today?

  1. Honestly? I don’t even know how you can eat enough food in a day to get 5-9 servings of anything.

    I’m a grazer, so I snack a little here and there between meals. That makes it hard to really keep track of servings, but it can’t be so bad if I’m noshing on a carrot here, some grapes there, frozen peapods out of the bag while I wait for the ones I’m making for dinner to steam…what?

    Of course that’s all mixed in with things that aren’t so good, like the odd tablespoons of Nutella and peanut butter from the jar, and my ongoing hot, melty love affair with cheese.

    • I think vegetables/ fruit could be easy if you do it right… it all depends because, like I said, some days I don’t even get any. But that’s from total lack of trying. You could make a salad easily with 4-5 servings and have that as your meal. Or stir fry. A peice of fruit with breakfast and one as a snack, along with some carrot sticks for a later snack… that right there (including the salad I mentioned) is 7-8 servings. But hey, if you’re grazing on vegetables (And not junk) I don’t think there’s a need to keep track of servings… oh god spoonfuls of nutella… yum. And cheese. I love cheese.

      • Nutella on stove-top popcorn with kosher salt.

        You’re welcome.

        I think people freak out about not getting enough servings because we, as a culture, have no idea what a serving actually looks like. Of course, with so much stuff being processed, we don’t always know what just plain food looks like or feels like in our bodies.

        I’m not proud of this, but I can snack like there’s no tomorrow, and not feel full. Sure, I’ll regret it later; but at the time, no problemo!

        But a small meal with food that took time to prepare from scratch is a million times more filling than the party-sized bag of tortilla chips and gallon of salsa.

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