Fit for the Future - Wellbeing at Ashford and Saint Peter's Hospitals

Getting your 5-a-day

Most of us know about the recommendation that we should eat five portions of fruit and vegetables each day, but did you know there are five ways to do it?

The fruit and veg can be fresh, frozen, dried, juiced or tinned (in juice or water) - but there are a few caveats to bear in mind:

  • Juice only counts as one portion a day.
  • Potatoes, yam and plantain don't count towards your five-a-day as they're starchy foods.
  • Pulses like kidney beans, chickpeas and haricot beans can be included - but only as one portion a day, however much you eat.
  • The fruit and veg in sauces, soups, puddings and yoghurts can count towards your five-a-day - but watch the salt and saturated fat in these foods.

 

How much is a portion?

An adult portion is 80g (about 3oz) of fresh, frozen or tinned fruit or vegetables. For dried fruit or veg it's 30g - or 150ml if you're having juice.

A good guide is that a portion is about a handful.

Small fruit Two plums, satsumas or kiwi fruit; eight strawberries; 12 grapes; 14 cherries.
Medium fruit One apple, pear, banana, nectarine or peach.
Large fruit One slice of melon or papaya; two slices of mango; half a grapefruit.
Greens Four heaped tablespoons of cabbage, spring greens, green beans, or spinach.
Cooked vegetables Three heaped tablespoons of carrots, peas or sweetcorn; four broccoli florets; six cauliflower florets; 16 medium okra; four heaped tablespoons of beansprouts; three-to-four heaped tablespoons of mushrooms.
Salad vegetables One medium tomato; half an avocado; a two-inch piece of cucumber; three sticks of celery; one handful of carrot sticks; one cereal bowl of mixed salad leaves.
Dried fruit One tablespoon of raisins, currants, sultanas or mixed fruit; two dried figs; three dried prunes; three dried apricots.
Tinned or frozen fruit and vegetables Two pear or peach halves; three heaped tablespoons of carrots, peas, sweetcorn or mixed veg; two heaped tablespoons of frozen berries; three heaped tablespoons of fruit salad; eight segments of tinned grapefruit; 12 chunks of pineapple or two pineapple rings.
Pulses and beans You can only count one portion of these per day. That could be three heaped tablespoons of baked beans, haricot beans, kidney beans, cannellini beans, butter beans, black eye beans, broad beans, lentils or chickpeas.
Juices Only one portion can be fruit juice each day too. A 150ml glass of fruit or vegetable juice (100% pure, unsweetened) or a 150ml smoothie. The smoothie can be counted as two portions if it contains 80g of fruit and 150ml of fruit juice.