You could become deficient in vitamins and minerals
Fruits and vegetables contain some of the most vital nutrients for our health, but a study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showed that only one in 10 adults ate the USDA-recommended three servings of vegetables and two servings of fruit a day. So what can happen if you don’t get enough fruits and veggies? Nutritional deficiencies, according to Laura Moore, RD, a registered dietitian at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston School of Public Health, which can lead to unpleasant side effects. Although you could get many of these vitamins and minerals from other foods, produce usually contains high concentrations of them—and many other antioxidants besides. If you aren’t getting enough, here are the 10 ways your body is trying to tell you you’re running low on vitamins.
You could develop digestive problems
Without fruits and veggies, you’re more prone to digestive ailments such as constipation, hemorrhoids, and diverticulosis. “Fruits and vegetables contain cellulose, which increases stool weight, eases passage, and reduces transit time,” Moore explains. In addition, they contain fiber, which Moore says “helps to alleviate or prevent constipation, stimulates the GI tract muscles so they retain their strength and resist bulging out into pouches called diverticula, and reduces pressure on the lower bowel, making it less likely for rectal veins to swell which causes hemorrhoids.” A study from Harvard Medical School showed that a diet high in dietary fiber, which fruits and veggies provide, reduces the risk for diverticulitis. Here are the easiest ways to get more fiber in your diet.