Why you should eat the rainbow

Eating phytonutrients for optimal health

We have long heard the advice to eat wholefoods. This means eating natural foods in their whole state. No tampering required. The nutrients in unprocessed foods work in synergy to promote health whilst processed foods, stripped of nutritional value can promote disease. It’s simple, eat a variety of whole ‘natural state’ foods that provide the vitamins, minerals, amino acids and essential fatty acids needed for optimal health and wellbeing.

Also important to our health are the 1200 or so phytonutrients in fruits, grains, beans and vegetables. Phytonutrients are the bioactive compound in plants that give them their colour and flavour. Phytonutrients support health in a different way to vitamins and minerals but play a vital role in protecting the body and preventing disease. Incorporating a rainbow of fresh fruit and vegetables into your diet is one of the most health affirming things you can do.

Rainbow guide phytonutrient and foods.  

Red

Lycopene – Protects against heart disease, cancer (especially prostate) and vision loss.

Anthocyanins – Can help reduce the risk of heart disease, cancer and neurodegenerative disease.  

Shopping list:

  • Fresh and cooked tomatoes
  • Watermelon
  • Goji berries
  • Papaya
  • Cranberries
  • Raspberries
  • Cherries
  • Red cabbage
  • Strawberries

Orange/Yellow

Carotenes and Xanthophyll - Source of vitamin A. Has anti-cancer and heart protective properties. Protects mucous membranes. Protects the eyes and brain. Strengthens the Immune system.

Shopping list:

  • Peppers
  • Squash
  • Carrots
  • Apricots
  • Oranges
  • Mango
  • Grapefruit
  • Eggs

Green

Lutein – Protects eyes and boosts immunity. Supports healthy tissues. Skin and blood.

Chlorophyll – Detoxifying to the body. Helps build red blood cells and collagen. Boosts energy.

Indoles – Has anti-cancer properties and supports hormone balance.

Shopping list:

  • All leafy greens
  • Cucumber
  • Kale
  • Green beans
  • Avocado
  • Asparagus
  • Microalgae
  • Sprouted grasses
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Broccoli
  • Cabbage

Blue/Purple

Anthocyanins – Free radical fighter that supports healthy ageing. Anti-cancer properties.

Resveratrol -  Anti cancer properties. Helps balance hormones.

Shopping list:

  • Blueberries
  • Aubergine
  • Grapes
  • Raisins
  • Red wine
  • Cocoa

White

Allyl Sulphides – Boosts immunity. Has anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory properties.

Anthoxanthins – Helps lower cholesterol and blood pressure. Helps reduce the risk of certain cancers and heart disease.

Shopping list:

  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • Chives
  • Cauliflower
  • Mushrooms
  • Parsnips
  • Ginger
  • Turnips

 

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