Colorful Foods - For your good Health
Looking for a way to improve your health? Colorful plant-based foods is a way to achieve this. For better weight control and a healthier life style, these foods are the way to go. They are not just visually appealing, they have their own unique health and anti-aging properties contained in their phytonutrients. These are the chemicals that give fruits and vegetables their color, taste, scent, and its antioxidant & disease fighting qualities.
One of the greatest concerns associated with aging is inflammation caused by disease. This is recognized by dermatologists as a major cause of age related skin deterioration. In addition, some clinical studies demonstrate that consumption of phytonutrients have shown promise in enhancing the immuine system, maintaining a youthful appearance, therefore preventing some cancers.
Basically, fruits and vegetables are divided into whites, greens, blues, reds, yellow, and orange. The type of health benefits you get from the various shades of fruits and vegetables will be different.
Whites and Greens
White fruits and vegetables contain nutrients such as beta-glucans, EGCG, SDG, and lignans. These provide immune enhancing benefits, and are thought to reduce the risk of prostrate, colon and breast cancer. One other benefit is they can help to re-balance hormone levels, thus reducing the risk of hormone related cancers.
Green Fruits and Vegetables contain lutein, chlorophyll, zeaxanthin, folate, vitamin C, calcium, and beta-carotene. They are believed to help reduce blood pressure, lower the risk of cancer, and improve cholesterol levels. In addition, greens are thought to help protect against cell-damaging free-radicals.
Blues and Reds
Blue Fruits and Vegetables are known for reducing the risk of blood clots, therefore reducing the risk of strokes. They also enhance circulation. Some food know to contain this are Black Berries, Plums, Eggplant and dark colored grapes.
Red Fruits and Vegetables contain lycopene. Their benefits include reduced risk of various cancers, and reduced chance of heart disease. In addition, this color is known for its anti-inflammatory properties, which can help with arthritis symptoms. These benefits can be found in grapefruit, cherries, red peppers, watermelon, and tomatoes.
Yellow and Orange
Yellow and Orange produce are known for containing zeaxanthin, Beta-carotene, flavonoids, lycopene, and vitamin C. They are also known for reducing the risk of some cancers. Yellow and Orange produce are also known for helping to slow diabetic related vision loss. In addition, Yellows and Orange's help to reduce the risk of heart disease. Foods to look for include cantaloupe, mangoes, carrots, and apricots.
A diet rich in antioxidants is the key to healthy living; no one is going to take care of your health better than you. Next time you visit a grocery store, try exchanging a bag of chips for fresh fruits and vegetables. Remember, the more colorful your meal or snacks are the better.
- Fruitsandveggiesmatter.gov - Government information on nutrition
- Simplyantiaging.com - Aging and nutrition related information