Plant-based eating: 7 ways to get more vegetables in your day.

While proteins and fats provide cell building blocks, vegetables provide most of the cofactors that make everything work. From building healthy cells to cleaning out the waste of day-to-day activity, including vegetables in your diet is extremely important. Veggies are incredibly rich in nutrients and antioxidants, which boost your health and help fight off disease.

Ounce-for ounce (or calorie for calorie) you get more “bang for the buck” when you make sure to include plenty of veggies while you meet your other nutritional needs.

Amazingly, health authorities recommend only several servings of vegetables each day. Even more amazingly, most people don’t get even that much. The truth is that reversing health issues requires nine (9 !!!) cups of veggies every day.

Why am I saying that? Because most of us have neglected our health and truly need six to even nine cups of vegetables to reverse inflammation, pain, fatigue, and other manifestations of disease.

9 cups of vegetables??!! Holy Moly that’s a lot! Ideas:

1. Make Veggie-Based Soups

Soups are amazing. Whether a pureed veggie base or meat broth (for instant amino acids that help gut health and energy) it’s simple to cook veggies into soups with delicious spices and unique blends.

Amazingly portable for lunch, adding even a small amount of extra veggies to your day is a great way to increase your intake of fiber, vitamins and minerals.

try an energy blast of carrot apple ginger soupTry these incredible plant-based recipes:

Golden Squash Soup

Moroccan Pureed Yam Soup

Energy Soup

2. Try Zucchini Lasagna

Swapping commercial pasta for, well just about anything… but especially spiralized or thin-sliced zucchini is an amazing way to serve your favorite food.

Lower carb content and add more nutrients is by replacing wheat (or rice or…) lasagna noodles with strips of zucchini.

Zucchini is a rich source of B vitamins and vitamin C, in addition to trace minerals and fiber.

Here’s the recipe and it is easily adapted for vegan or vegetarian lifestyles

3. Experiment With Veggie Noodles

Veggie noodles are easy and and excellent low-carb substitute for high-carb foods like pasta.

Just put your veggies (carrots, zucchini, sweet potatoes…) into a spiralizer, process veggies into noodle-like shapes, saute, add your sauce… EASY 🙂

Try these sauces:



Broccoli sauce

Tomato and Wild Mushroom sauce

4. Add Veggies to Sauces

Whatever sauce you are making… add some parsley, carrots, mushrooms, peppers, think dark and green or red or purple and enjoy your higher energy.

5. Change your Pizza Crust

Seriously? I can have Pizza?

Yes you can

You won’t be able to order this as a fast food but it is surely an amazing treat. Here are my favorite crusts, the toppings are yours to decide.

Deep-dish, amazing crust

Thin pizza crust

6. Blend Veggies Into Smoothies

Smoothies are refreshing and when you add a great protein powder they can become a complete meal. Make more than you can eat and pack the extra for lunch.

Please do make your own. When you grab them from Starbucks or a box or any other commercial entity, our current culture has dictated adding a ton of sugar to “improve” the taste. Gosh this is terrible!

Here’s the basic recipe:

1 Tablespoon chia or flax seed

1 cup coconut milk or almond milk makes it rich and creamy

¼-½ cup combined veggies and fruit

2 scoops of Standard Process Whey Protein or Great Lakes gelatin or plant protein (here is a well-balanced and economical brand)

2 teaspoons of flax oil or coconut oil

My favorite includes a little mint to be refreshing, the possibilities are endless.

7. Add Veggies to Casseroles

Veggies in casseroles is a great way to get your family eating more nutrient dense foods.

Most casseroles are loaded with grains, dairy sauces, cheese, and any number of foods that go against our health goals.

Luckily, it is super simple to reduce calories and carbs in your casseroles by replacing the grains with veggies. Grab your favorite recipe and replace any cheese and seeds with broccoli, mushrooms, celery, carrots…

And remember, one big switch that improves the meal means a lot!

Meatloaf might not sound like vegetables. I get that. But there are no known sources of vitamin B12 in the plant kingdom, the “healthy fats” are not quite the same, and a whole bunch of other important nutrients have gone missing. For these reasons I have a hard time getting behind a completely vegan diet. That said, commercial feedlots are inhumane and atrocious. What to do?

“Vote” with your money. Refuse to buy animal products from any vendor who cannot prove their humanity. Animals must be allowed to pasture or run free in the traditional ways. Fish need to swim in the ocean.

Vegetables need to be grown free of herbicides and pesticides and certainly not GMO.

And please consider that grains are 70 percent starch. If you need to control your blood sugar, blood pressure, or weight, you’ll need to keep your starches low, under 120 grams per day.

Need help? I’m just a call away at my South Anchorage location: 907-240-1175

About msternquist

Most people want to take care of their health, but few of us know where to start.

These recipes and researched-based information are my gift to help you enjoy the health and quality of life you’ve always wanted.

Born of a need to help my Nutrition Response Testing clients answer the question: “What’s there to eat?” this website is my community service to the world. What’s Nutrition Response Testing? A completely non-invasive way of learning what is stressing the body to cause its symptoms, and developing the exact drug-free program that supports the body in fixing that problem.

I also offer one-on-one nutritional coaching, group talks and am developing online programs to empower everyone with the knowledge to make healthy changes. Want to know more? email me at [email protected] or head on over to (hint: create an account and you get all my Health Downloads absolutely FREE)

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2 Responses to Plant-based eating: 7 ways to get more vegetables in your day.

  1. Denise Zirkle says:

    Thank you for sharing all this incredible nutrition information.

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