Health Benefits of Fruits and Vegetables in Liberian Cuisine
Background: Sufficient consumption of fruits and vegetables, as recommended by the World Health Organization and Food and Agriculture of the United Nations, has been greatly linked with a lowered risk of chronic/lifestyle diseases, digestive problems, mental health problems, eye problems, high blood pressure and body weight management. It is recommended for adults to eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables per day. Unfortunately, most Liberians do not follow such a healthy dietary pattern. Be it as it may, this book focuses on the health benefits of fruits and vegetables in Liberian cuisine.
Methods: For this narrative review, appropriate scientific articles were considered from mainly Google Scholar using the keywords health benefits, fruits, vegetables, Liberian cuisine, vitamins and minerals. An observational study was also conducted using mini nutrition assessment tool and descriptive analysis.
Results: In spite of the protective effects of fruits and vegetables as suggested by existing data, most Liberians still consume low amounts of them. This is evident by the observational study conducted and the information gathered from secondary data sources. It is important to deploy health education strategies to promote fruit and vegetable consumption among Liberians.
Conclusion: It is obvious that the eating patterns of most Liberians are unhealthy. The risks involved by not including fruits and vegetables into the daily meals of Liberians are fatal and could cause damages to several organs. Realizing the fact that medical bills for treating lifestyle or chronic diseases are far more expensive than practically handling those risk factors that contribute to their emergence, it is fair enough for all Liberians to make great use of the fruits and vegetables they consume on a seasonal basis.