Want to eat better?

Add more color to your diet. Eat a rainbow of colors every day for optimal health. The "rainbow" refers to a variety of fruit and vegetable colors. Eating, red, orange, yellow, green, ...

purple and white fruits and vegetables ensure that you're getting a variety of phytonutrients.

How can you get your family members to eat more fruits and vegetables? It is best to encourage them at an early age to try a variety of fruits and vegetables. This will expose them to a multitude of textures and flavors.

Keep a colorful rainbow of fruits and vegetables washed, handy and ready to eat to encourage family members to grab them for snacks. Incorporate fruits and vegetables into all of your main dishes. Soups, cereals, salads and casseroles are easy places to blend in various fruits and vegetables.

Although fruits and vegetables come in a rainbow of colors and flavors, their real beauty lies in what's inside. Fruits and vegetables are great sources of many vitamins, minerals, and other natural substances that help protect you from chronic diseases.

The brighter deeper colored fruits and vegetables contain higher concentrations of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, and different colors provide different benefits.Eating fruits and vegetables of different colors gives your body a wide range of valuable phytonutrients.

The more colorful your diet, the more antioxidants you get. These compounds reduce overall cellular damage and prevent the hardening of the arteries that can lead to heart disease, stroke, even memory loss. Every hue, red, orange, yellow, green, purple,and even white signifies a different class of nutrients each of which offers a unique benefit.For more variety, eat a different assortment of fruits and vegetables regularly.

Losing weight by eating a super nutritious colorful diet is what experts say is the best way to slowly lose weight and keep it off.

Because each color category represents different nutrients and antioxidants, our nutritionist suggests you eat one serving from each color group daily. A serving is defined as one cup raw of fruits or vegetables or half cup cooked.

 

Red Fruits and Vegetables

When you add deep reds or bright pinks to your daily diet, you are also adding a powerful antioxidant called lycopene. Lycopene is in tomatoes, red and pink grapefruit, watermelon, and guava. Diets rich in lycopene reduce the risk of some cancers, including prostate cancer.Red fruits and vegetables are also great sources of protein, beta-carotene,vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin C, and ellagic acid.

 

Shopping list: Rhubarb, strawberries, red chili peppers, cherries, radishes, red raspberries, red bell peppers, red apples, red potatoes, red onions, pomegranate, red and pink grapefruit, red beans, red grapes, tomatoes, cranberries, and watermelon.

Snack ideas: stuff rhubarb with baked apples and sprinkle with cinnamon, have a serving of fresh strawberries topped with cool whip or for on the run grab an apple to go.

 

Orange Fruits and Vegetables

Orange fruits and vegetables assist in detoxifying and releasing toxins from the body. Orange fruits and vegetables such as sweet potatoes, mangoes, carrots, and apricots contain beta-carotene. This carotenoid is a natural antioxidant which enhances your immune system and promotes eye health. In addition to being a powerful health protector, the orange group is rich in vitamin C, vitamin A, and vitamin E, Foliate, a B vitamin may help prevent some birth defects. Found most often in leafy greens, it is also in orange fruits and vegetables.

 

 

Shopping list: oranges, carrots, papaya, sweet potatoes, cantaloupe, butternut squash, apricots, orange peppers, mango, pumpkin, peaches, nectarines, orange cauliflower, and tangerines.

Snack ideas: baby carrots, cantaloupe wedges, pumpkin soup, baked sweet potato, or baked peach slices served with half cup nonfat frozen yogurt.

 

Yellow Fruits and Vegetables

Yellow fruits and vegetables generate power. These are foods rich in immune stimulating properties and vitamins and minerals such as vitamin A, vitamin E, B complex, sodium, potassium, selenium, and chromium.

 

Shopping list: lemons, yellow corn, yellow passion fruit, yellow squash, pineapple, yellow cauliflower, yellow raspberries, yellow peppers, yellow apples, yellow beets, yellow figs, yellow potatoes, star fruit, yellow string beans, yellow watermelon, yellow tomatoes, and yellow kiwi.

Snack ideas: enjoy a cup of fresh cubed pineapple or mash a fresh yellow fig and spread over a mini bagel for brunch.

 

Green Fruits and Vegetables

Green fruits and vegetables are rich in the phytonutrients that help keep you healthy too. For example, the carotenoids, lutein and zeaxanthin found in spinach, collards, kale, and broccoli have antioxidant properties that protect your eyes by keeping your retinas strong. In addition, research shows that green cruciferous vegetables such as cabbage, brussels sprouts, kale, and turnips may reduce the risk of cancerous tumors, support arterial function, and keep your liver and lungs functioning properly.

 

Shopping list: green beans, kiwi, snow peas, broccoli, honeydew, spinach, green peppers, green apples, leafy greens, lettuce, brussels sprouts, limes, romanesco cauliflower, zucchini, asparagus, green pears, avocados, endive, cucumbers, green grapes, celery, parsley, snap peas, tomatillo, green onions, artichokes, green olives,okra, and cabbage.

Snack ideas: prepare fresh limeade, avocado spread or have a cup of fresh fruit.

 

Purple Fruits and Vegetables

Purples and blues add health enhancing flavonoids, phytonutrients and antioxidants. Anthocyanins, a phytonutrient are pigments responsible for the blue color in fruits and vegetables. They may help defend against harmful carcinogens and promote colon health. Blueberries in particular are rich in vitamin C and folic acid and high in fiber and potassium. The pigments found in these foods are high in anti-cancer properties.

 

Shopping list: acai berries, beets, blackberries, eggplant, purple carrots, silvanberries, purple cauliflower, purple grapes, purple asparagus, blueberries, purple sweet peppers, purple kohlrabi, black currants, purple string beans, purple passion fruit, purple plums, and purple potatoes.

Snack ideas: enjoy a fresh blueberry smoothie or blackberry sorbet.

 

White Fruits and Vegetables

White fruits and vegetables contain varying amounts of phytonutrients including allicin, which has been hot lately in the current research for promoting heart health.

 

Shopping list: Asian pears, white onions, white patty pan squash, bananas, white potatoes, white peaches, cauliflower, lychee, garlic, white nectarines, mushrooms, parsnips, white corn, ginger, white asparagus, coconut, and white kidney beans.

Snack ideas: instead of a high calorie snack from the vending machine, enjoy a fresh banana or for the next pot luck in the office make a white kidney bean salsa.