Monday, July 11, 2011

What is a Serving Size of Fruit or Vegetables?

     The USDA recently revamped their recommendations for foods Americans should be eating daily, and changed the term "servings" to "cups" - Now, we are told for a healthy diet, we should visit,  enter our age, sex, and activity level, and we'll be told how many cups of fruits and how many cups of vegetables we should be eating per day.

But what IS a cup of vegetables? A cup of fruit? Mother Nature doesn't typically present our Clean Eating in nicely proportioned servings...

asparagusAsparagus: About 4 spears
black beansBeans, Cooked (black, garbanzo, etc.): 1 cup
red bell pepperBell Pepper: 1 cup chopped or 1 large pepper (about 3 inches in diameter)
broccoliBroccoli: A generous fistful (tennis ball size) of florets or about 16 small florets
carrotsCarrots: 1 cup chopped or 2 medium whole carrots (6 to 7 inches long)
cauliflowerCauliflower: A little less than a 1/4 head of florets
celeryCelery: 1 cup diced or 2 stalks (11 to 12 inches long)
cornCorn: 1 cup of kernels or 1 large ear (8 to 9 inches long)
cucumberCucumber: 1 cup sliced/chopped or about 1/2 of a medium cucumber (8 to 9 inches long)
green beansGreen Beans: 1 cup cooked ( It's about 19 to 20 beans)
spinachGreens, Cooked (kale, chard, etc.): 1 cup
lettuceGreens, Raw (lettuce, spinach, etc.): 2 cups (about two large leaves of chopped romaine)
squashSummer Squash: 1 cup cooked/sliced/diced squash or 1 whole zucchini (7 to 8 inches long) or about 1/2 of a large yellow crookneck
sweet potatoSweet Potato: 1 cup mashed or 1 large baked potato (about 2 1/4 inches in diameter)


appleApple: 1 small apple (about 2 1/2 inches in diameter, a little smaller than a baseball)
bananaBanana: 1 large banana (8 to 9 inches long)
cantaloupeCantaloupe: 1 cup diced or about 1/8 of a large melon
dried fruitDried Fruit: 1/2 cup
grapefruitGrapefruit: 1 medium grapefruit (about 4 inches across)
grapesGrapes: About 32 average grapes
orangeOrange: 1 large orange (a little bigger than a baseball)
peachPeach: 1 large peach (about the size of a tennis ball)
pearPear: 1 medium pear
pineapplePineapple: 1 cup chopped (a little less than 1/4 of a pineapple)
plumPlum: 2 large plums
strawberriesStrawberries: 8 large berries
tomatoTomato: 1 cup chopped or 1 large tomato (about 3 inches in diameter, about the size of a baseball)