Why choose in season fruit?
In the nutrition stakes, fruit is at the top of the list. One of the most nutrient-dense food groups, fruit is packed with essential vitamins and minerals and makes a significant contribution to our dietary fibre intake.
More fruit, please
Research suggests we could benefit from more than the recommended two serves of fruit a day, as it contains antioxidants called phytochemicals. In addition, according to the World Health Organisation, 11 per cent of strokes and 31 per cent of heart disease worldwide could be caused by low fruit and vegie intakes.
While it’s super important to reach your recommended daily fruit (and vegie) serves, it’s also a good idea to choose fruit that’s in season and to eat a rainbow of colours so you optimise your intake of different nutrients. Go for sweet and sensational fruits that are on offer right now, such as mangoes, pineapple, strawberries and blueberries.
Nutritional content on spring fruits
Each fruit is a little powerhouse of yummy goodness.
1. Avocados- A source of healthy fats, with 60 per cent monounsaturated fat.
2. Blueberries- With anthocyanin, an antioxidant thought to prevent brain ageing.
3. Grapefruit- Clocks up more than 3g of dietary fibre.
4. Mangoes- Packed with Vitamin A and potassium.
5. Pawpaw & papaya- More than twice an adult’s recommended dietary intake of vitamin C is found in one cup of pawpaw or papaya.
6. Strawberries- Like most berries, they have lots of vitamin C to help boost your immune system.
Fresh fruit recipes
Tropical beef salad
Cut papaya or pawpaw into 6cm-long slices and toss with thinly sliced seared beef steak, halved cherry tomatoes, sliced cucumber, bean sprouts, thinly sliced red onion, fresh mint and coriander. Drizzle with a dressing made of fresh lime juice, fish sauce, finely chopped fresh red chilli and a pinch of brown sugar.
Easy-as creamy fruit salad
Toss blueberries and halved strawberries with a little balsamic vinegar and a pinch of caster sugar. Set aside for 30 minutes to macerate. Toss with shredded fresh basil leaves and serve with a dollop of fresh reduced-fat ricotta.