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GO BIG ON VARIETY

The more varied your diet – particularly in regard to plant foods – the better. You should be aiming for 30 different plants a week… here’s how to hit that magic number

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MAKE JEWEL SOUPS Homemade soup is a great way to add a variety of plants to one dish – but for a double health boost, make your soup as bright as possible. ‘Intensely coloured fruit and vegetables are the highest in plant chemicals called polyphenols, which are shown to help reduce inflammation,’ says nutritionist Jenna Hope. Get started with our beetroot and apple soup, opposite.

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BUY ONE NEW THING ‘Pick one new plant food every time you go shopping,’ says Jenna. ‘This can include fruits and vegetables, but also beans, pulses, nuts and seeds.’

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COOK ONCE, EAT TWICEBatch cooking may save time but it can also reduce variety in your diet. ‘Instead, make double portions of foods such as grains, proteins and veggies, and mix and match these to create different meals throughout the week,’ says holistic nutrition coach Joan Abebe (joanabebe.com).

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THEME YOUR WEEK Joan also suggests designating specific days for different global cuisines… ‘For example, Mexican Mondays, Italian Wednesdays and stir-fry Friday. It gives you a plan and keeps things exciting by rotating flavours and ingredients.’

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EAT SEASONALLY ‘This introduces a natural variety into your diet,’ says Joan. ‘Visit local farmers’ markets to discover what’s in season and build your meals around your discoveries.’

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PLAN AROUND PROTEIN As well as fruit and veg, it’s important to switch up protein sources and fats. Nutritional therapist Pippa Campbell recommends this approach, which she uses with clients: ‘Have a list of proteins (such as salmon, chicken, pork and tofu) on yourfridge and base meals around it. Don’t have the same protein two days in a row.’

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REACH FOR READY MIXES A pack of ready-mixed plant food makes it easier to add diversity to our diets. Nutritionist Sophie Trotman says: ‘A mixed seed pack might contain five different seeds; mixed frozen berries could contain four different types.’ Also look for tins of mixed beans and frozen veggie mixes.

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