Ways to more and healthier vegetables

Vegetables are something everyone should have more of every day.

While completely changing the way one cooks is difficult, there are some easy ways to start adding more vegetables to one's diet.

Some tips for those falling short of their five a day.

Stick it and dip it: Take sticks of crisp raw vegetables for lunch and eat them with cottage cheese, hummus or any other dip.

Have them handy: Always keep frozen peas, green beans, sweetcorn or broad beans. Add them to soups, casseroles or pasta. Serve them as side dishes.

Go green: Aim to eat broccoli or green leafy vegetables three times a week. For instance, stir broccoli florets into your pasta dishes.

Grate it and you will win: A sneaky way to more vegetables, just grate carrots into your sandwiches, salads and burritos.

Bio-availability of essential nutrients: Iron from vegetables is always more difficult to absorb that iron from animal source. As a tip, delay drinking tea or coffee until 20 minutes after your meal. Tea, including herbal tea, and coffee contain tannins that reduce absorption of iron.

More nutritional value: Add some nutritional value to your pancakes. Add pureed sweet potato or pumpkin for great flavor too.

No mayo: Mash avocado, mix with 1 tsp lemon juice, and use it in sandwiches instead of mayonnaise.

Potatoes are starchy: Trade your baked potato for a sweet potato adding some fiber to your diet.

Instead of cheese or white sauce: Use tomato sauce with your pasta, you get an extra helping without noticing.

Pasta primavera: For those who cannot renounce their white sauce. Toss cooked pasta with steamed vegetables and mix with the white or cheese sauce. Sprinkle grated Parmesan cheese on top. Use carrot sticks, peas, broccoli florets, corn, green beans and othe vegetables you have around.

Pesticide and fertilizer free: To avoid artificial pesticides and other chemicals, switch to organic foods whenever possible.

Butternut squash: Easy to roast, sliced and sprinkled with olive oil it will take 40 minutes at 375°F (180°C). Try to roast it cubed and sprinkled with paprika.

Broccoli: Try steaming some broccoli then tossing with extra virgin olive oil and toasted flaked almonds. Prepare a warm salad by tossing the steamed broccoli with vinegar and olive oil, or lemon and olive oil -try adding a little chopped chili for more flavor.

More carrots: Juice the carrots. Add carrot juice to orange juice for extra vitamins and great flavor. Prepare a delicious and nutritious smoothie by blending bananas, orange and carrot juice.

Pizza mad: If you cannot live without pizza, choose often spinach, mushrooms, roasted peppers, tomato slices or broccoli as toppings. You are allowed the pepperoni and extra cheese now and then.

Hide vegetables: Pureed in sauces and soups, grated in muffins and cakes, or use special pasta made with up to 40% broccoli or carrot.