Fruit and vegetables are good for you! There, I said it, but you should know that already. What is it that make these multicolored, soil living produces so important to eat?

Because they contain vital vitamins and necessary nutrients, are disease defying, and fiber filling. All ingredients your body needs to stay healthy. So, what is the appropriate approach to intestinally incorporate those good goodies into our bodies? Most fruits you eat raw, a variety of vegetables can be consumed as is (provided that it is washed well and prepared properly), and some are more suitable served simmered.

Simmering is one way of cooking to harvest the numerous nourishments present in the purchased produce, like tomatoes. Making a sapid sauce breaks down the cell walls, releases the antioxidant lycopene, responsible for many health benefits.

Steaming is one of the best ways to cook your vegetables. Boiling causes vegetables, especially leafy greens, to lose nutrients, washed away by the water. So make a soup to benefit the otherwise lost nutrients. Other vegetables more nutritional when cooked are:

  • carrots
    Cooking carrots allows your body to absorb more beta-carotene, which converts to vitamin A, required for good vision, bone growth, and enhancing the immune system.
  • mushrooms
    Although cooked mushrooms lose some of their nutrients when cooked, they shrink, reducing their size, so you eat more cooked mushrooms versus raw ones.
  • spinach
    Cooking increases vitamin, fibre and nutrient absorption, however boiling it would reduce those nutrients considerably, so make a soup with the water or steam the spinach.
  • asparagus
    These green or white shoots are full of potent nutrients, but are hard to digest raw because of their thick cell walls. Cooking them enables better assimilation. Blanched or roasted with some olive oil are my favorite ways to prepare it.

Many nutrients in vegetables are destroyed when cooked, but allows for better nutritional intake. To get the most of the nutrients, some vegetables should be eaten raw sometimes.

  • bell peppers
    Crisp and juicy, raw bell peppers are great in salads, but you should once in a while eat it lightly sauteed.
  • onions
    Raw onions have high sulfur content, beneficial for your body, ideally on salads or burgers. If you can't stand the pungent taste, cook it lightly.
  • broccoli
    This super vegetable can be eaten raw, but consume small quantities and chew well if you have issues digesting them. Steaming it lightly until cooked but still crunchy, helps preserve some nutrients and easier intestinal consumption.
  • garlic
    When cut or crushed, fresh garlic produces illicin, a sulfur compound credited for many health benefits. However, this compound is unstable and should be consumed sooner rather than later.

In the end consuming vegetables and fruit in whatever form is beneficial. It is also important to vary your intake of fruit and vegetables. A healthy snack provides you with more nutrition than other produced nibbles.