EATING FROM THE RAINBOW by Vickie Kline

rainbow foodThis phrase, “Eating from the rainbow,” is starting to show up more and more. So, take a second and think about it… and the benefits. A plate full of color is a plate full of nutrition. Each color (fruit or vegetable) we eat, provides something different and a specific benefit to our body.

There are a lot of unfamiliar terms listed, but concentrate on the benefits…

Reds: tomatoes, apples, beets, watermelon, red wine, grapes, chile peppers, bell peppers, strawberries, beans, red onions. Red foods contain resveratrol, capsaicin, and lycopene. These keep you from getting hungry, can relieve pain, and reduce the risk of prostate cancer.

Orange: winter squash, lentils, obviously oranges, turmeric, carrots, and sweet potatoes. Orange foods contain curcumin, beta-cryptoxanthin, alpha-carotene,and hesperidin. The benefits from these foods are boosting the immune system, promoting bone cell growth, reducing inflammation, and blood vessel damage.

Yellow: pineapple, corn, papaya, tangerines, lemons, spaghetti squash, and yellow peppers. Yellow foods contain bromelain, limonoids, lutein, and curcumin. The benefits of eating these foods are a release of enzymes that ease indigestion and asthma, lower cholesterol, and promote eye health.

Green: spinach, artichokes, avocados, grapes, green onions, brussels sprouts, broccoli, kale, parsley, chard, all leafy greens. Green foods contain apigenin, luteolin, catechins, and isothiocyanates. We need these to help fight diseases like Alzheimer’s, to lower cholesterol, and purge the body of carcinogens. Fruits and Vegetables

Purple: purple cauliflower, purple cabbage, berries, eggplant, and purple radishes. Purple foods contain ellagic acid and anthocyanins, which help slow metabolism, improve brain function, and reduce risk of cancer, stroke, and heart disease.

With all these choices, it’s easy to eat healthy and provide our body with nutritional value. Many of these foods will pick up the flavor of any spices or herbs you put with them, so you create the taste. More nutritional value exists if foods are eaten raw, but steaming or roasting are good preparations, as well.

Not sure you’re ready to give up your favorite foods? There’s no need to. If you decide to have pasta, stir in some green onions and spinach. With your rice, stir in purple cabbage and some artichokes. Or, when you prepare a salad, make it interesting with beets, broccoli, celery, and a yellow pepper. The possibilities are endless. You will not only create beautiful meals, but will be “eating from the rainbow,” and eating healthful meals to feel great.

Strive to be healthy!

Images courtesy Feels Like Home and The Top Five Reasons to Eat More Fruits and Veggies

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