Have you every thought about why fruits and vegetables are different colours? Part of the reason is because they contain vitamins and minerals. So, it is really important that you choose foods of every colour to ensure that you are getting all the essential vitamins and minerals that your body requires.
Green leafy vegetables such as spinach, Romaine lettuce, collard greens, kale and broccoli should be eaten every day because they contain more nutrition per calorie than any other food. Greens make up a significant source vitamins A, C, E and K as well as several B vitamins. They are rich sources of minerals such as calcium, magnesium, iron and potassium. They are rich in fibre, extremely low in fat and carbohydrates and provide an excellent source of protein. The darker the colour in leafy vegetables, the more nutrients it contains.
Green vegetables are so healthy because they are packed with nutrients and phytochemicals substances found only in plants which help fight disease and improve health. Lutein is a powerful antioxidant found in green leafy vegetables that helps to maintain good vision.
Indoles are another group of phytochemicals found in cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts. Indoles help protect against breast cancer and prostate cancer.
Best Green Sources of Lutein
Best Green Sources of Indoles
Honey dew Melon
Vegetables such as sweet potatoes, carrots, and pumpkins all contain the phytochemical beta carotene. Beta carotene is a powerful antioxidant that reduces the risk of cancer and heart disease. In addition, it helps maintain good eyesight and helps your body fight colds and flu by boosting your immune system.
Citrus fruits such as oranges, grapefruits, and tangerines contain another group of phytochemicals called bioflavonoids. Bioflavonoids, work together with Vitamin C (which these fruits are also high in) to keep bodies healthy, help reduce the risk of cancer, strengthen bones and teeth, help heal wounds, keep skin healthy, and lower the risk of heart attack.
Best Orange Sources of Beta Carotene
Best Orange Sources of Bioflavonoids
Lycopene and anthocyanins are found in red and pink fruits. Lycopene is one of nature’s most powerful antioxidants, and research has shown that it has numerous health benefits, including helping to reduce the risk of cancer, heart diseases and other chronic conditions. Unlike other nutrients such as vitamin C, the amount of available lycopene actually increases after cooking it! Anthocyanins are powerful antioxidants that help control high blood pressure and protect against diabetes-related circulatory
Best Red Sources of Lycopene
Best Red Sources of Anthocyanins
Sun dried Tomatoes
These fruits contain disease-fighting phytochemicals, including anthocyanins and phenolics. Phytochemicals, substances found only in plants, help your body fight disease and promote good health.
Anthocyanins and phenolics are found in berries, dried plums (prunes), and raisins. These powerful antioxidants help reduce the risk of diseases including cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s, and may even slow down the aging process.
Research suggests that eating blueberries, in particular, may prevent some of the effects of aging by improving cell communication in the nervous system. Some degree of memory loss which occurs slowly with aging starts around age 50. Eating berries like blueberries and blackberries may help to reverse this trend.
Best Blue Sources of Anthocyanins
Best Blue Sources of Phenolics
Dried Plums (prunes)
WHITE: What these vegetables lack in colour, they make up for by bursting with a powerful phytochemical called allicin. This can be found in onions, leeks, garlic etc. Allicin is considered to be protective against cancer and heart disease. It is most widely recognized for its action as an antiviral, antifungal, and antibacterial agent with the ability to block the toxins produced by bacteria and viruses. It is also an antioxidant and helps to eliminate toxins, which is why garlic is sometimes considered a detoxifier.
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The problem is what pesticides have penetrated them, how fresh they are by the time you get them home and whether you can even afford to buy them. Many can not afford to feed themselves or a family every day with enough fresh fruits and vegetables. I heard on National Public Radio very recently that the SNAP program has just been well funded to double food assistance dollars when recipients use their card to buy at local produce providers. I so hope that is true. What a great idea.
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