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Difference Between Fruits and Vegetables

fruit_vegetableFruits vs Vegetables
So you thought that you were getting your share of the fruit and veggies every day? Here’s a thought- did you know that the tomato and bean soup you were guzzling down does not contain even a slice of vegetable?

If you are interested in the technicalities, a fruit is the mature ovary of a flowering plant. The function of the fruit is to bear the seeds, which help in the growth of more plants. That means your eggplants, cucumbers, corn and peas are all really fruit. Even hard and dry nuts are, technically speaking, fruit.

Vegetables refer to the edible portions of a plant. They may include the leaves (as in lettuce), stalks (your favorite celery), the roots (carrots), bulbs (onions) and flowers (as in the broccoli). If you are arguing that the fruit is also an edible part of the plant, you are right. The only difference is that the fruit would be separating from the plant after some time, so that the seeds inside can develop into a new plant.

There is a common misconception that the fruit is the only sweet and soft part of a plant. The rest of the plant is conveniently allocated as vegetables. The truth is that even the tomato is a fruit and not a vegetable!

This is because a fruit is usually found on the part of the tree that is above the ground. As tomatoes grow on vines and not on trees, there is a perennial argument about this poor fruit. People tend to think of fruits as a sweet and succulent part of the part. Moreover, they don’t even use the tomato as they would normally use a fruit. Even the pumpkin and zucchini you so adore are technically speaking part of the fruit family. This is because they are a part of the squash family.

When your dietician asks you to maintain a balance between the fruit and vegetables you are having, make sure you know exactly what you are taking in. A simple thumb rule to follow is to find out whether the confusing thing has seeds or not. If it does, it is in all probability, a fruit.

Both fruit and vegetables are required as part of your daily diet. Fruits provide you with your daily dose of antioxidants, vitamin c and all the fiber you need. The nutritive value of vegetables cannot be ignored either. Vegetables provide you with the roughage you need in your diet. Vegetables also provide you with vitamins and proteins. A diet without vegetables will leave you malnourished and lacking in essential proteins and vitamins. In general, vegetables have less sugar content compared to fruits. Vegetables also provide more fiber compared to fruits.

So, the next time you pick up a carrot and start wondering whether you are taking in a fruit or a vegetable, don’t. The important thing is to mix it up and eat as varied a diet as you possibly can.


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7 Comments

  1. Fruit ripens after it has been picked…..vegtables does not

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