I feel like a broken record, maybe even a persistent nagger, but hey, I really believe this is the foundation to optimal health.
Whole Colorful Food Rocks Your Body!
I am not asking for people to eat more produce ( although that would be a good idea), but I am suggesting, with very good reasoning, to purchase and hue your plate with colorful whole foods and not so many processed packed foods.
The Why on Color:
Red: Folate, lycopene, flavonoids
Lycopene has been linked to fight cancer cells, folate to prevent birth defects, depression & irritability and certain types ( there are subgroups) of flavanoids ( or bioflavonoids) are known for their antioxidant activity ( defending us from those free radicals!).
Also, think red – heart because red foods may help fight heart disease.
Green foods are full of nutrients, fiber and there are so many to choose from – avocados, spinach, broccoli, kale, kiwi.
Lutein is an antioxidant, and found in high concentrations in the eye (& associated with the ability to see ). Bring on lutein rich foods to decrease your risk of blindness…which can occur in the aging process.
Yellow & Orange: Vitamin A (beta-carotene)
Yellow foods are packed with beta-carotene and the body does its magic by converting the beta-carotene into vitamin a.
The importance of vitamin a, besides seeing in the dark, is keeping the tissues of the respiratory, urinary and intestinal tracts healthy. By doing this, it makes it difficult for germs (HBD: Battle with the Bugs) to attach to the linings of these tracts. Therefore a great help for the immune system.
Purple & Blue: Blood vessels, memory
Back to flavonoids, but this type of flavonoid found in the blue purple foods, helps to maintain strong healthy blood vessel walls. This means a decrease in heart disease!
Eating blueberries may also help with your memory, which, I am admitting, I could use some help with in my aging years! Lucky for me, this is my favorite fruit.
All in all, colorful foods are packed with all types on nutrients that do all sorts of things in the body to help us function optimally everyday. Next time you are at the market, think about filling your cart with some color ( easier if you stay in the periphery of the store), make that dinner plate like a rainbow and make up stories about what certain foods do in the body. Kids love this! They will, I guarantee, think about these stories next time they are up to bat or running a race.
Image credit: Reflexer
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