Health & Wellness

What Happens If You Don’t Eat Vegetables: 7 Warning Signs

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This article was written by a guest contributor. For guest contribution guidelines, please visit this page. Jennie Miller is the editor in chief of Midss.org – a health and wellness website that aims to improve readers’ lives with healful content.

You’ve probably heard it a thousand times, particularly when growing up, when your mother would say, “Eat your veggies and fruits.” And she was absolutely correct. The bad news is that the majority of us do not eat enough veggies. In fact, 90% of us aren’t getting the suggested amount of fruits and vegetables a day, as per the nutritionists’ suggestions— 2 cups of fruit and 2.5 to 3 cups of vegetables for most adults.

It’s critical to consume enough of these colorful foods daily, even as an adult, and here’s why: fruits and vegetables are packed with tons of nutrients to better your body and health. According to Midss.org, they can help lower high blood pressure and prevent heart disease, nutrient deficiencies, digestive problems, colon cancer, and more. They taste great and are super versatile, so it’s pretty easy to bring them into food and play with different flavors and textures to find a style that works for you.

Is a plate of green leafy vegetables still not appealing? Here are a couple of reasons why you must give them a second chance.

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What Happens If You Don’t Eat Vegetables?

what happens if you dont eat vegetables

According to the World Health Organization, the leading global health risk is a lack of exercise and a poor diet. Consuming fewer vegetables makes it more difficult to maintain a healthy weight and increases the risk of disease. If you have trouble eating enough vegetables, try incorporating them into each of your meals to ensure you’re getting enough vital nutrients, vitamins, and minerals.

Greater Risk of Getting Chronic Diseases

The World Health Organization estimates that not eating enough fruits and vegetables is responsible for 1.7 million deaths worldwide, with 14 percent of gastrointestinal cancer deaths, 11 percent of heart disease deaths, and 9 percent of stroke deaths attributable to inadequate fruit and vegetable intake.

If you don’t eat vegetables, you increase your chances of developing these conditions. A diet high in fruits and vegetables, on the other hand, can help prevent or at least reduce your risk of developing them.

This is due to the high levels of essential vitamins and minerals, phytochemicals, antioxidants, and fiber found in vegetables. Minerals and vitamins allow your body to perform critical chemical reactions involved in everything from heart health to bone health to blood sugar control.

Problems With Weight Management

Vegetables are naturally low in fat and calories, so eliminating them from your diet may make weight management more difficult. They’re also high in fiber and water, which add volume to your meals and fill you up faster than low-fiber foods. People who don’t eat a lot of vegetables tend to replace them with higher-calorie foods, such as pasta or extra meat, which aren’t as filling for the same volume and allow them to consume a lot more calories.

On the other hand, replacing a cup of higher-calorie foods, such as pasta, with a cup of vegetables can help you reduce your overall calorie intake while increasing your nutrient intake. This could prevent weight gain.

Your Skin Appears Dull

Vegetables are high in antioxidants, which may help protect our bodies from free radicals that can damage the texture of our skin. Also, many fruits and veggies, such as tomatoes, are high in water and can be hydrating to the skin.

You Can Experience Muscle Cramps

Smooth muscle contraction requires a sufficient amount of potassium in the muscles. Muscle cramps and twitches can occur if the potassium levels in your blood are too low. Fruits and vegetables are the best sources of potassium, so eating plenty of them is essential. Dark leafy greens like spinach and swiss chard, as well as sweet potatoes and bananas, are excellent sources of potassium.

You Could Feel More Stressed

Magnesium promotes relaxation by maintaining healthy levels of GABA, a neurotransmitter that relaxes both the body and the mind. It also plays a role in the body’s stress response system, and a lack of it is linked to increased stress and anxiety. The relationship between magnesium and stress is bidirectional: stress depletes magnesium, and magnesium deficiency amplifies stress. 

Veggies, particularly dark leafy greens like spinach, are high in magnesium. So a lack of vegetables in your diet could certainly result in low blood levels of this mineral.

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You Could Feel More Tired

Consuming too many highly processed foods may be one of the causes of your fatigue (for example, foods high in simple sugars and sodium). Consuming highly processed foods can put extra strain on the body and drain energy, not to mention foods high in simple sugars can cause energy spikes and drops.

You May Experience Blurry Vision

That old adage about carrots being good for your eyes is partially true. Carrots are high in vitamin A, and if you don’t get enough of it in your diet, your vision can suffer, resulting in night blindness or worse. Vitamin A deficiency can also cause eye dryness, corneal ulcers, and retinal damage, which leads to blindness. Vitamin A is found in yellow and orange-colored vegetables as well as dark leafy greens, so making sure you get enough of these vegetables in your diet is critical for protecting your eyes.

roasted vegetables

Tips to Add More Fruits and Vegetables to Your Diet

Still struggling to get your daily intake of fruit and veggies? You’re not alone. Here are a few easy ways to include more of these power foods into your diet.

Sneak The Veggies In

Start eating fruits and vegetables with your morning meal to get the recommended five servings per day. Add bananas to your cereal, berries to your yogurt, or vegetables to your morning omelet. You can even try grating up carrots and zucchini for easy additions in your meatballs or baked goods.

Display Ready-Made Fruit

You’ll never eat it if you don’t buy it. So, find some fruit that looks especially delicious to you and display them with pride to encourage everyone in your family to make better choices. Set out a fruit bowl or carrot sticks in the kitchen for snacks. Prepare the fruits or vegetables in easy, ready-to-grab portions for extra convenience.

Eat Fruit With Your Sweets

Nature’s natural candy is fruits. Puree berries to make an easy sauce in desserts such as ice cream. While ice cream is unhealthy, a fruit sauce with no added sugar is better than anything else you might put on your sundae, such as chocolate sauce.


Vegetables have an undeserved reputation for being bland, flavorless, or bitter. While you may have been forced to eat veggies as a child, you may still find it difficult to incorporate vegetables into your diet as an adult. The problem is that these superfoods contain everything your body requires to stay healthy, and not eating enough of them can have serious consequences. 

Vegetables have numerous advantages, including being high in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber. All of these things are used by your body to function properly and to prevent chronic diseases. Because of this, it’s important to include some fruits and vegetables in your diet.

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