The Conscious Gut

7 Day Fruit And Vegetable Diet: Is It The Healthiest Way to Lose Weight?

Is This Diet – The Best Option?

People who are trying to slim down always search for the most convenient weight-loss method. But they should always keep in mind that burning fat is not an easy process, it requires a lot of time, effort, and determination. And even if they manage to lose weight, they need to make sure that they do so in a healthy way. Those who want to sculpt a perfect body should not only exercise regularly but also have healthy eating habits. Will this 7-day fruit and vegetable diet be effective at helping you achieve your body goals? Is a fruit and vegetable diet good for weight loss? Read on to find out!

Benefits of Fruits and Vegetables

Before going on a diet, first, you need to find out how the food on which it is based affects your health. Since fruits and vegetables are considered two of the healthiest food groups, you can rest assured that they can improve your health and help you safely reach your goal. Each fruit and vegetable has its own potential health benefits and can provide you with certain essential nutrients. A significant content of fiber in fruits and vegetables may reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases and obesity. These two types of food are also a rich source of micronutrients, including vitamins C and A, minerals, phytochemicals, and others (7). Here are some of the health benefits of a fruit and vegetable diet:

  •  Improves heart health

It is recommended that in order to prevent chronic diseases your diet should include plenty of fruits and vegetables. Higher intake of these two types of food can lower the risk of cardiovascular disease. Studies suggest that eating plenty of fruits and veggies can also slightly reduce the chance of major chronic diseases (6). Although all fruits and veggies are beneficial for you, some are especially effective at improving your heart health. That is why you need to make sure that your diet includes green leafy vegetables (kale, spinach, lettuce, mustard greens, and others), cruciferous vegetables (cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, and others), and citrus fruits (lemons, oranges, limes, grapefruits, tangerines, and others).

  • Helps maintain blood pressure

In the clinical trial, Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension, they assessed the effects of dietary patterns on blood pressure. They examined the effect on blood pressure of a nutritional plan high in vegetables, fruits, and low-fat dairy, and reduced the intake of saturated and total fat. Following this dietary plan led to the reduction of the level of blood pressure in people with high blood pressure (1).

  • Helps fight diabetes

A study conducted by the American Diabetes Association including over 70,000 healthy female nurses aged 38-63 years, showed the link between high intake of fresh green leafy vegetables and fruit and a reduced risk of diabetes, whereas fruit juices consumption might increase the risks for the same population (11).

  • Maintains eye health

A study of the effects of fruits, vegetables, vitamins, and carotenoids intake on the Age-Related Maculopathy (ARM) found that consumption of fruits is linked to a lower risk of neovascular ARM (12).

  • Helps in weight loss

Any healthy weight loss diet includes plenty of fruits and vegetables. They are low in calories and rich in vital nutrients which makes them some of the best foods for weight loss. Some fruits and vegetables, however, are considered to be more beneficial for maintaining or reaching a desired weight. A 2015 study suggests that increased intake of fruits and vegetables rich in fiber and with a low glycemic index (GI) is linked to a healthy weight. It implies that different fruits and vegetables have different effects on weight management (3).

While such fruits and vegetables as apples, pears, berries, soy, and cauliflower are popular with people who want to slim down, starchy vegetables like corn, peas, and potatoes are likely to promote weight gain when consumed in excess. So, if you want to enrich your menu with fruits and vegetables, and hope that the sole addition of some of them will lead to weight loss, then you need to reconsider your methods. Adding more healthy foods to your diet won’t help you reach your goal unless they replace unhealthy foods, such as sugary beverages and foods, refined carbs, and saturated and trans fats (15).

How Much Fruits and Vegetables Should You Eat a Day?

The general recommendation of fruit and vegetable intake is 5 servings a day although tubers such as potatoes and cassava are excluded from these recommendations.

National nutritional guidelines in India state that you should eat at least 3 100-gram (around 3.5oz) servings of vegetables and 1 100-gram (around 3.5oz) serving of fruits a day. Vegetables should include 50 grams (1.75oz) of green leafy vegetables, 50 grams (1.75oz) of roots and tubers, and 200g (7oz) of other vegetables. Fruits can be in the form of 100 grams (around 3.5oz) of any fresh whole fruit, or a glass of a natural fruit juice without sweeteners (10).

How to Lose Weight in 7 days on a 7 day Fruit and Vegetable Diet?

Eating more fruits and vegetables, as well as other healthy foods that promote safe weight loss, such as whole grains, lean meats, eggs, fish, beans and legumes, nuts and seeds is a must if you want to reach your body goals without wreaking havoc on your body. Since weight loss comes down to burning more calories than you consume, fruits and vegetables are two of the most convenient food choices for you, since they are nutrient-dense while being low in calories. But remember that simply adding some more fruits and vegetables to your current menu will only increase your calorie intake and may even set you back from your goal (9). So, what you need to do here is substitute empty-calorie foods with fruits and create a healthy calorie deficit.

You can reduce the calorie value of some of your favorite dishes by substituting some high-calorie ingredients with fruits and vegetables. Fiber and water in these two types of food will add volume to your dishes, making you feel fuller with fewer calories. Lots of fruits and vegetables are naturally low in fat and calories and are still filling.

Substituting Other Foods with Fruits and Vegetables

You can try substituting some ingredients partially, for example, add some spinach, mushrooms, tomato, or bell pepper into your morning omelet instead of one egg or cheese. If you are a fan of sandwiches or burritos, you basically have endless options and can substitute any ingredient with some vegetable, without sacrificing the taste quality.

You can also substitute half of the meat or noodles in your broth-based soup with the same amount of chopped vegetables, such as carrots, broccoli, beans, red pepper, and others. You can have some vegetables instead of a cup of rice or pasta since they will add to your feeling of satiety while providing you with more nutrients and reducing your energy intake (9). So, basically, you can substitute any high-calorie ingredient with a vegetable or fruit and it should help with your weight loss journey.

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7 Day Fruit and Vegetable Diet Plan for Weight Loss

After finding out the benefits of the 7-day fruit and vegetable diet, people often consider starting to follow this nutritional plan. But it is not enough to just start eating more vegetables and fruits. To be able to successfully slim down in a healthy way you need a great meal plan for your 7-day fruit and vegetable diet. Here is a well-rounded meal plan you should consider trying out:

Day One

Meal 1: Raspberry Oatmeal

Ingredients:

  • ¾ cup oatmeal cooked in 1 ½ cup water
  • ⅓ cup raspberries

Calories310 (per serving)

Meal 2: Whole-Wheat Veggie Wrap (16)

Ingredients:

  • 1 8-inch whole-wheat tortilla
  • 2 tablespoons hummus
  • ¼ avocado, mashed
  • 1 cup sliced fresh vegetables of your choice
  • 2 tablespoons shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

Calories: 344.9

Meal 3: Mushroom-Quinoa Veggie Burgers with Special Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 1 large portobello mushroom, gills removed, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup no-salt-added canned black beans, rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted creamy almond butter
  • 3 tablespoons canola mayonnaise, divided
  • 1 teaspoon ground pepper
  • ¾ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ¾ teaspoon garlic powder, divided
  • ½ cup cooked quinoa
  • ¼ cup old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 tablespoon ketchup
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 whole-wheat hamburger buns, toasted
  • 2 leaves green-leaf lettuce, halved
  • 4 slices tomato
  • 4 thin slices red onion

Calories394 (per burger)

Total calories for the day: 1048.9

Day Two

Meal 1: Huevos Rancheros

Ingredients:

  • 2 tsp canola oil
  • ½ cup chopped red bell pepper
  • ½ cup chopped tomatoes
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup cooked black beans (can be canned, no salt added)
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • dash of hot sauce
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • black pepper to taste
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons chopped scallions
  • 8 tablespoons salsa

Calories:  255 (per serving)

Meal 2: Stuffed Potatoes with Salsa & Beans

Ingredients:

  • 4 medium russet potatoes
  • ½ cup fresh salsa
  • 1 ripe avocado, sliced
  • 1 (15 ounces) can pinto beans, rinsed, warmed, and lightly mashed
  • 4 teaspoons chopped pickled jalapeños

Calories: 324.4 (per potato)

Meal 3: Beefless Vegan Tacos (2)

Ingredients:

  • 1 (16 ounces) package extra-firm tofu, drained, crumbled, and patted dry
  • 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium tamari or soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • one tablespoon vegan mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon lime juice
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • ½ cup fresh salsa or pico de gallo
  • 2 cups shredded iceberg lettuce
  • 8 corn or flour tortillas, warmed
  • 1-ounce pickled radishes for garnish

Calories360.1 (per 2 tacos)

Total calories for the day: 639.5

Day Three

Meal 1: Chia Seed Pudding (4)

Ingredients:

  • 5 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 1/4 cup almond milk
  • ½ tbsp vanilla extract

Calories: 385 (per serving)

Meal 2: Black Bean and Quinoa Salad with Quick Cumin Dressing

Ingredients:

For the salad:

  • 1 cup dry quinoa, rinsed
  • dash salt
  • 1 cup diced cucumber
  • 1 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 10-15 basil leaves chopped into a chiffonade
  • 1 can black beans, cooked, drained, and rinsed
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

For the vinaigrette:

  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup or agave
  • 2 teaspoons dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • dash black pepper
  • 1 shallot minced (optional)

Calories: 195.4 (per serving)

Meal 3: Stuffed Pumpkin (14)

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium-sized pumpkin or round squash (about 1 kg)
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 100 g wild rice
  • 1 large fennel bulb
  • 1 Bramley apple
  • 30 g pecans, toasted and roughly chopped
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds
  • ½ tsp chili flakes
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 large pack parsley, roughly chopped
  • 3 tbsp tahini
  • pomegranate seeds, to serve

Calories:  693 (per serving)

Total calories for the day: 1273.4

Day Four

Meal 1: Raspberry Oatmeal

Ingredients:

  • ¾ cup oatmeal cooked in 1 ½ cup water
  • ⅓ cup raspberries

Calories310 (per serving)

Meal 2: Stuffed Pumpkin (14)

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium-sized pumpkin or round squash (about 1 kg)
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 100 g wild rice
  • 1 large fennel bulb
  • 1 Bramley apple
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds
  • ½ tsp chili flakes
  • 30 g pecans, toasted and roughly chopped
  • 1 large pack parsley, roughly chopped
  • 3 tbsp tahini
  • pomegranate seeds, to serve

Calories693 (per serving)

Meal 3: Eggplant Rollatini with Cashew Cheese

Ingredients:

  • 2 large eggplant, sliced lengthwise into ¼ inch thick slices
  • olive oil
  • 1 ¼ cups cashews, soaked for at least three hours (or overnight) and drained
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 1 small clove garlic, minced (optional)
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • ⅓-½ cup water
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • black pepper to taste
  • ½ 10 oz  package frozen spinach, defrosted and squeezed thoroughly to remove all excess
  • liquid (You may press it firmly through a sieve)
  • 1 ½ cups organic, low sodium marinara sauce

Calories: 187.3 (per serving)

Total calories for the day: 1190.3

Day Five

Meal 1: Gluten-Free Banana Pancakes, Served with 1 Cup Fresh Berries

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all-purpose, gluten-free flour
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp cinnamon dash sea salt
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 ripe banana
  • ⅔ cup almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 tbsp + 2 tsp melted coconut oil, divided
  • a cup of fresh berries

Calories: 313.75 (per 2 pancakes)

Meal 2: Mango, Kale, and Avocado Salad

Ingredients:

  • 1 bunch curly kale, de-stemmed, chopped, washed, and dried (about 6 cups after preparation)
  • juice of 1 large lemon
  • 2 teaspoons flax or olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoons maple syrup or agave nectar
  • 1 chopped red bell pepper
  • 1 cup mango, cut into small cubes
  • sea salt to taste
  • 1 small Haas avocado, cut into cubes

Calories: 342.5 (per serving)

Meal 3: Mushroom-Quinoa Veggie Burgers with Special Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 1 large portobello mushroom, gills removed, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup no-salt-added canned black beans, rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted creamy almond butter
  • 3 tablespoons canola mayonnaise, divided
  • 1 teaspoon ground pepper
  • ¾ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ¾ teaspoon garlic powder, divided
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup cooked quinoa
  • ¼ cup old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 tablespoon ketchup
  • a teaspoon of Dijon mustard
  • 4 slices tomato
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 whole-wheat hamburger buns, toasted
  • 2 leaves green-leaf lettuce, halved
  • 4 thin slices red onion

Calories: 394 (per burger)

Total calories for the day: 1050.25

Day Six

Meal 1: Banana and Almond Butter Oats

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup old-fashioned rolled oats (such a Quaker®)
  • ½ cup vanilla-flavored almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • one banana
  • 1 tablespoon almond butter

Calories425.1 (per serving)

Meal 2: Kale Salad with Apples, Raisins, and Creamy Curry Dressing

Ingredients:

For the dressing:

  • ½ cup raw cashews or walnuts
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 pitted dates
  • ½ cup of water
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 2 tsp curry powder

For the salad:

  • 1 head kale, de-stemmed, washed, dried, and cut into bite-sized pieces (about 5 cups)
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 large apple, chopped into small pieces
  • ⅓ cup raisins
  • ½ cup chickpeas

Calories: 96.2 (per serving)

Meal 3: Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili 

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds orange-fleshed sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes
  • ½ teaspoon ground dried chipotle pepper
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons ancho chile powder, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 (28 ounces) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup water, or more as needed
  • a tablespoon of cornmeal
  • 1 teaspoon salt, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon white sugar
  • a teaspoon of unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 (15 ounces) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper, to taste
  • ½ cup sour cream, for garnish
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish

Calories599.9 (per serving)

Total calories for the day: 1121.2

Day Seven

Meal 1: Strawberry Oatmeal Breakfast Smoothie (13)

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of soy milk
  • ½ cup rolled oats
  • one banana, broken into chunks
  • 14 berry (blank)s frozen strawberries
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ teaspoon white sugar

Calories: 236.1 (per serving)

Meal 2: Curry Red Lentil Soup

Ingredients:

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 head cauliflower, chopped into small florets
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 1 cube vegetable bouillon
  • 1 (14 ounces) can reduced-fat coconut milk
  • a cup of red lentils
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried onion flakes
  • a teaspoon of curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 bunch kale leaves, stems, and inner ribs discarded leaves coarsely chopped

Calories399.5 (per serving)

Meal 3: Warm Vegetarian Farro Salad with Cauliflower, Pistachios, and Cranberries

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups cauliflower florets
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt, divided
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ⅓ cup white wine
  • ⅓ cup dried cranberries
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 ½ cups farro
  • 3 cups of water

For the dressing:

  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped pistachio nuts

Calories: 533 (per serving)

Total calories for the day: 1168.6

Can a 7 Day Fruit and Vegetable Diet Help in Losing Weight?

Yes, if you follow it correctly. For example, instead of having salty chips or a candy bar as a snack, try eating some cut-up vegetables or fruits. Simply by substituting an unhealthy snack with a fruit and vegetable you will already make substantial headway on your weight loss journey. A 1-ounce bag of corn chips contains as many calories as a small apple, 1 cup of whole strawberries, and 1 cup of carrots with 1/4 cup of low-calorie dip. So, if you substitute the bag of chips with one or two of the mentioned options you will not only reduce your calorie intake but also get the beneficial nutrients from the fruit or vegetable of your choice.

Here are some fruits and vegetable with less than 100 calories to have as a snack (9):

  • a medium-size apple (72 calories)
  • a medium-sized banana (105 calories)
  • 1 cup steamed green beans (44 calories)
  • 1 cup blueberries (83 calories)
  • a cup of grapes (100 calories)
  • 1 cup carrots (45 calories), broccoli (30 calories), or bell peppers (30 calories) with 2 tbsp hummus (46 calories)

The Bottom Line: Is 7 Day Fruit And Vegetable Diet Good For Weight Loss?

Yes. A fruit and vegetable diet promotes weight loss and overall better health. Most fruits and vegetables are low in calories and fat, and high in fiber and various essential micronutrients, which makes them two of the best food options for successful weight loss. Following a 7-day fruit and vegetable diet plan that creates an energy deficit and performing regular workouts will definitely help you slim down a couple of sizes. But remember, before starting to follow any new nutritional plan, it is required that you consult a health specialist.

Alexandra Danieli

Alexandra Danieli, CHC, The Conscious Gut
🥑 Overcome Anxiety and Depression
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