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Your mom may have always admonished you to eat your vegetables, but why?
What Are Vegetables?
Vegetables are edible plants or the edible parts of a plant, such as the roots, stem, and leaves. They are an important part of a healthy diet because vegetables are filled with vitamins and antioxidants that the body needs to grow and maintain good health.
Vegetables are also the only source of dietary fiber which the human body needs to aid digestion, filter out cholesterol, and lower blood sugar.
Some vegetables, such as broccoli, kale, and spinach are also packed with calcium, which strengthens bones and teeth.
Vegetables include foods like carrots, potatoes, beans, peppers, and cabbage.
How Many Vegetables Should a Person Eat?
According to the United States Department of Agriculture, children ages 2-8 should eat a cup to a cup and a half of vegetables each day. Children and teens ages 9-18 should eat two to three cups of veggies per day.
For optimal health, nutrition experts recommend "eating a rainbow" each week. Vegetables come in a variety of colors. Usually a deeper hue indicates more nutrients. Kids (and adults) should make it their goal to eat at least one serving of vegetables from each color of the rainbow every week.
How to Prepare Vegetables
Vegetables can be prepared a variety of ways. They can be eaten raw dipped in salad dressing, a veggie dip, or plain.
They can be baked, sautéed, steamed, or roasted. Many vegetables lose many of their nutrients if they are overcooked, so the cooking method with the shortest cooking time is often the healthiest option.
Use the following free printables to help your students learn more about the variety of foods that make up the vegetable group.01of 09
Eat Your Vegetables Vocabulary
Print the pdf: Eat Your Vegetables Vocabulary Sheet
Help your student begin to explore the tasty world of vegetables with this vocabulary sheet that introduces a wide variety of common veggies.
Students should use the internet or dictionary to help them match each vegetable with its correct description. For extra fun, visit your local grocery store and purchase the vegetables that your student hasn't tried before and take them home for a taste test.02of 09
Eat Your Vegetables Wordsearch
Print the pdf: Eat Your Vegetables Word Search
Students can use this fun word search puzzle to review the vegetables the he defined on the vocabulary sheet.03of 09
Eat Your Vegetables Crossword Puzzle
Print the pdf: Eat Your Vegetables Crossword Puzzle
How many veggies can your student remember? This crossword puzzle provides a fun and simple review. Each clue describes one of the vegetables defined on the vocabulary sheet. See if your student can correctly identify each to complete the puzzle.04of 09
Eat Your Vegetables Challenge
Print the pdf: Eat Your Vegetables Challenge
Use this vegetables challenge sheet as a simple quiz to see how many vegetables your student can correctly identify. Each clue is followed by four multiple choice options.05of 09
Eat Your Vegetables Alphabet Activity
Print the pdf: Eat Your Vegetables Alphabet Activity
Younger students can review the names of 25 vegetables as they practice their alphabetizing skills. They should write the names each of the vegetables listed in the word box in correct alphabetical order on the blank lines provided.06of 09
Eat Your Vegetables Draw and Write
Print the pdf: Eat Your Vegetables Draw and Write Page
Use this versatile draw and write sheet to allow your student to practice his descriptive writing skills. Ask students to draw a picture of their favorite (or least favorite) vegetable.
Then, instruct them to use the blank lines provided to describe the vegetable, including its appearance and texture and how it tastes and smells.07of 09
Fun with Vegetables - Vegetables Tic-Tac-Toe
Print the pdf: Vegetables Tic-Tac-Toe Page
As you learn about veggies, have fun playing vegetable tic-tac-toe. First, cut the playing markers off at the dotted line. Then cut the pieces apart. This activity is perfect for giving young students an opportunity to hone their fine motor and critical thinking skills.08of 09
Vegetable Cart Coloring Page
Print the pdf: Vegetable Cart Coloring Page
As your students color this page that encourages them to eat a healthy diet of vegetables each day, remind them to see how many colors of the rainbow they can include.09of 09
Vegetables Theme Paper
Print the pdf: Vegetable Theme Paper
Students can use this veggie theme paper to write a story, poem or essay about vegetables.
Updated by Kris Bales