More Matters: Fruits & Veggies

Remember the pithy wisdom of 5 a Day? Forget it. It's not enough, not anymore.

When it comes to fruits and veggies, More Matters.

(Isn't it too bad that "veggies and fruits" doesn't slip off the tongue, or down the throat for that matter, more easily?)

So says the Produce for Better Health Foundation (PBH), which in 2007 will launch a big new campaign to encourage the consumption of more fruits and veggies ... what a good idea, yes?!

(Who the heck is PBH? I wondered, too. It's a trade group that represents "growers, shippers, packers, merchandisers, commodity boards, trade associations, food industry organizations, health insurers, health professionals and retailers". That means it's all about promoting the produce industry ... you know, creating demand for produce, selling more produce, developing new markets for produce. But hey, at least it's not tobacco or gambling or ...)

The new campaign will match up with the new USDA dietary guidelines issued back in 2005, the ones depicted in still another logo, the new food pyramid promoted at MyPyramid.gov.

Whether those new guidelines are any easier to follow is up for debate.
Sure, the old "servings" were difficult to remember because they varied so much. (Was a banana one serving or two? How many fists of carrots made up a serving? Or was it a baseball? I forget.)

But the
new scheme is hardly less complicated. It is individualized, but so much so that it took 15 minutes to figure out what it advised for me and how that differed from what I eat today. (As it turns out, that's 3 cups of vegetables and 2 cups of fruit, per day. Hey wait! Doesn't 3 + 2 = 5 a day? I must be pretty average, for sure.)

So for simple communication, I like the concept that "More Matters". You don't need to figure out how much to eat of what, only that when it comes to fruits and veggies ... More Matters ... and then work to that end. If today's vegetable consumption is a single lonely pea, then More Matters ... two peas matter.

What do you think? Will More Matters help at your house, with your kids, your own diet? Or are you, like me, thinking that More Matters might work for veggies ... but better still for good coffee, good chocolate and ... hey! yes, it's that time of summer ... good tomatoes!






(c) Copyright 2006 Kitchen Parade

6 comments:

Interesting! I think the concept "More Matters" certainly is a catchy way to tap into the current American fetish with all things bigger (from vehicles to overstuffed sofas to super-sized containers of fries) and use it for good. Will it really convince people to eat more fruit and veggies? Food-conscious people, of course, know that more veggies and fruits are always better for you than more coffee and chocolate (alas!), but will the not-so-food conscious take this idea and run with it? I don't know. Perhaps that depends on whether a super-sized container of fries counts as a vegetable...

I've been trying to use mypyramid.gov for my nutrition course homework and its nearly impossible to use. Not to mention that it gets hysterical when I dont eat tons of dairy and grains and meat. Dear oh dear, back to the drawing board!

Alanna, ever since I started blogging I've realized that I'm cooking more and more fresh vegetables. I think the first reason was that I was "cooking for an audience" and wanted to try different things, but now we're getting used to and wanting the fresh ones now instead of the frozen and canned ones. (One or two exceptions--peas and legumes other than green beans). We love turnips, and I just looked up your recipe for creamed turnips--I think I'll give it a try. Normally I just boil 'em and squash 'em and add a little butter and salt, but the creamed ones sound pretty tasty. I'll let you know how they turn out!

Cyndi ~ You completely made my day and it's only 6 in the morning! re frozen and canned, I still use frozen vegetables, especially in the winter. And laugh if you want, but I buy canned green beans BY THE CASE at Sam's!

Notice, Alanna, that the group that is suggesting that we eat more fruits and vegetables, represents growers, shippers, packers, retailers--all organizations that would profit from Americans eating more of their products.

Now--don't get me wrong--I think most Americans could do with eating more vegetables and fruits and less meat, dairy and processed foods, but it is still interesting to see where this message is coming from and look at the motivations of those who are putting it out there.

Jennifer ~ I hadn't thought of More Matters as quintissentially American but you're absolutely right.

Jenny ~ Too bad re mypyramid.gov, it really does have potential. But I find it too quirky too.

Barbara ~ I'd never thought of our lovely fruits and vegetables as needing 'advocates'. But the new head of the PBH is the VP of marketing for the avocado association: now that's a fruit that needs advocacy! I find it some distressing that avocadoes get attention but Swiss chard, say, or I don't know, my new favorite broccoli rabe, don't. Or maybe they do: or maybe we can start them!

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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe, whether a current recipe or a long-ago favorite. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. ~ Alanna