From wine to spaghetti hoops – what unexpected foods count as one of your five a day

MILLIONS of wine lovers think their favourite tipple counts as part of their five-a-day quota of fruit and veg.

One in 20 think that because it is made from grapes, a daily drop of vino is part of a healthy diet, research by Aldi found.


Unfortunately the grapes in wine don’t help towards your five a day ‘because of wine’s alcohol content’[/caption]

But Sun nutritionist Amanda Ursell says: “The grapes won’t count because of wine’s alcohol content.”

Another survey by Birds Eye found that people even believe a Bounty Bar counts as one of their daily allowance because it contains coconut.

But there are some unlikely everyday foods which actually are more nutritious than you might think.

Here, Amanda and weight loss expert Ania Mason tell Yasmin Harisha where you can sneak in your five a day.

Hummus – YES


Eat hummus with carrot or cucumber sticks and you’ve just ticked off two veggies [/caption]

AMANDA SAYS: “A healthy hummus can count as one of your five a day because, like baked beans, chickpeas are a pulse vegetable.

“Eat it with slices of carrots, cucumber and pepper and you can easily bump this up to two of your five.”

Orange juice – YES


Having a 150ml serving of orange juice will count as one of your five[/caption]

AMANDA SAYS: “Having a 150ml ­serving of orange juice would count as one of your five – but ­having 300ml does not mean you can tick off two.

“Whatever you are ­having drink-wise, experts limit the amount of fruit you can count in a smoothie or fruit juice to the equivalent of just one 150ml serving.”

Plantain – NO


While plantains are closely related to bananas, Amanda says they’re actually counted as a starchy carbohydrate[/caption]

AMANDA SAYS: “Fruit obviously count as one of your five. But unlike the closely related banana, plantains are counted as a starchy carbohydrate, like potatoes, rather than one of your five a day.

“They give you 91 calories per 80g portion and more if fried.”

Tomato puree – YES


If you have enough of it, tomato puree can be one of your portions[/caption]

AMANDA SAYS: “Tomato puree does count as one of your portions, although it’s unlikely you would get through the amount you need by itself.

“It’s more likely to count when used within a dish like a healthy spaghetti bolognese, which also has onions, garlic and tomatoes.”

Apple pie – NO


Apple pie doesn’t make the list as its high fat and sugar content means it could never classify as a healthy option[/caption]

AMANDA SAYS: “There are two good reasons why apple pie doesn’t count.

“First, you would have to have a huge portion to get anywhere close to having an 80g serving of apple.

“And second, if you did, the pie would provide so much fat, sugar and, therefore, calories, it could never classify as a healthy option.”

Onions – YES


One of the most forgotten members of the five a day list is the onion[/caption]

AMANDA SAYS: “Often used in sauces or part of side dishes, you may forget that onions are part of your five a day.

“Roast one alongside a Sunday lunch or chomp your way through six spring onions in a salad.”

Tomato ketchup – NO


Sorry kids – ketchup contains too much sugar and too little tomato to count[/caption]

AMANDA SAYS: “Big brands claim to use 148g of tomatoes to make 100g of sauce, but added sugar and the fact you only have 15g in a serving means this does not come up trumps in the healthy stakes.

“Sorry, kids – that’s just the way it is.”

Strawberry shake – YES


If it contains enough strawberries, a milkshake will count[/caption]

AMANDA SAYS: “Yes, a strawberry milkshake can be part of your five a day. Just add 80g worth of fresh or frozen strawberries to milk.

“Strawberries help protect the heart, increase good cholesterol, lower blood pressure and guard against cancer.

“They are also packed with vitamins, fibre and high levels of antioxidants known as polyphenols.”

Ribena – NO


Ribena is made using blackcurrants ‘but the added sugar takes away any goodness from this fruit’[/caption]

AMANDA SAYS: “It may be made using blackcurrants, but the added sugar takes away any goodness from this fruit.

“Sugary drinks contribute towards obesity, and a lot of popular fizzy and flat drinks are highly acidic, too.

“Ribena is one of the worst offenders when it comes to acidity. And this can have a negative knock-on effect for your teeth.”

Spaghetti hoops – YES


A small 205g serving of spaghetti hoops can get one portion in[/caption]

ANIA SAYS: “Tomatoes make up 41 per cent of this Heinz snack, so a small 205g serving (half a standard tin) can get your portion in.

“It’s the tomato sauce that puts it on the healthy list.”

Fruit jam – NO


Swap regular jam for chia jam if you want your daily spread to count[/caption]

ANIA SAYS: “If you think that ordinary jam could count as one of your five-a-day, you will be surprised to learn that most brands contain approximately 60 per cent sugar and as little as 20 per cent fruit.

“A healthier alternative is chia jam, which is made from just raspberries cooked with seeds and a little water.”

Christmas pud – NO


Ania says Christmas pudding contains dried fruit, ‘which is not quite what your nutritionist would recommend’[/caption]

ANIA SAYS: “Christmas pudding contains dried fruit, which is not quite what your nutritionist would recommend.

“It is high in fructose which gets metabolised in the liver, putting additional stress on your body’s ability to detox. So it’s probably best we only have this at Christmas.”

Potatoes – NO


Many will be surprised to hear that potatoes are in the starchy carbohydrate part of a meal, rather than one of your five a day[/caption]

AMANDA SAYS: “On the one hand, potatoes are a vegetable, but they are also a really good source of starchy carbohydrate.

“Experts have decided to put them in the second category, which means a baked potato would be the starchy carbohydrate part of a meal, rather than count as one of your five a day.”

Bloody Mary – NO


Even with a big stick of celery, a Bloody Mary doesn’t make the cut[/caption]

AMANDA SAYS: “Nice try but the vodka in a Bloody Mary means health experts don’t allow us to use the tomato juice to contribute to our veg count for the day – even if you serve with a big stick of celery as a garnish.”

Onion bhaji – NO


Bhajis might contain onion, but once deep fried they won’t count towards your quota[/caption]

AMANDA SAYS: “It may contain onion, but you have to remember that the onion has been coated in flour and deep fried.

“So if you were to assign it with traffic light labelling, it would have a ‘red’ for fat.

“As a result, it can’t be given the OK as one of your five a day.”

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