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Although the required amount of veggies varies by individual, the U.S. Department of Agriculture generally recommends that adults eat 2 to 4 cups each day. Functional-medicine experts say that’s too few, and sug­gest 9 cups, measured raw.

The 9-cup recommendation sounds like a lot, but it’s more manageable than you might think. Functional-medicine practitioner Terry Wahls, MD, clinical professor of medicine at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine and author of The Wahls Protocol Cooking for Life, offers the following examples of what counts as a cup.

What Counts as 1 Cup of Veggies?

1 avocado8–10  asparagus spears

1 beet

1 large bell pepper

4–5 large Brussels sprouts

⅙ head of cabbage

1 large carrot

¼ head of cauliflower

2 ribs of celery

⅓  large cucumber

2 cloves of garlic*

4 large lettuce leaves

5 mushrooms

1 handful of spinach

1 large tomato

⅓  large yam or sweet potato

* Wahls gives garlic extra credit for its nutrient density.

More Inspiration to Eat Your Veggies

a broccoli salad

9 Cruciferous Veggies — and How to Enjoy Them

There are a wide variety of brassicas and many delicious ways to prepare them.
Read more

One Healthy Habit

For more inspiration and other challenges, please visit One Healthy Habit.

Experience Life magazine
Experience Life Staff

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