The easiest, entertaining and most palatable method for making sure you are eating a healthy diet is to eat lots of colorful foods. Foods that are red, orange, green, yellow, and blue indicate more well-rounded and nourishing choices. Eating right not only adds a tremendously varied hue to foods on your plate, it may provide a veritable arsenal in your fight against disease, and the effects of aging!
Deep Red or Bright Pink
Choices like tomatoes, grapefruit, watermelon, papaya and guava are a great source of the powerful antioxidant lycopene, and may fight heart disease and some cancers.
Spinach, collards, kale, and broccoli contain the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin, which are known to have antioxidant properties. Cruciferous vegetables such as cabbage, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower and turnips are loaded with vitamins, minerals and fiber. The phytochemicals in these foods go a long way to keeping you in good health. Not only are these foods being studied for their role in fighting cancer, but for their ability to protect your eyes by keeping your retina strong.
Orange and Yellow
Sweet potatoes, mangos, carrots, apricots, pineapples, corn and pears are great sources of beta-carotene, as well as being another rich source of vitamins, minerals and fiber. It is believed these choices do much to enhance your immune system.
Blue and Purple
Grapes and blueberries add the health-enhancing benefits of flavonoids, phytochemicals, and antioxidants to your daily diet. The pigment anthocyanin is a phytochemical responsible for the blue color in vegetables and fruits, and is being studied for its role in your body’s defense against harmful carcinogens.
Onions, garlic, chives, scallions and leeks contain allicin, which may help to lower cholesterol and blood pressure, while increasing the body’s ability to fight infections.
Published on July 11, 2008