Why celebrate Fruits and Veggies? Because they are so good for us!
Fruits and vegetables contain tons of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that may help prevent heart disease, cancer, and inflammation, as well as boost your mood, and you’re your waistline.
How can you make sure you are getting enough of Mother Nature’s medicine? Eat the rainbow every day…
If you eat one or two servings from each of the five colors of fruits and vegetables each day, you’ll be getting a healthy dose of vitamin and phytonutrients. A serving is about a quarter-cup and can be raw, steamed, cooked in soups or stews, canned, or frozen.
Buy local and organic whenever you can. Wash your fruits and veggies in mild soap or soak in a dilute solution of peroxide to wash away pesticide and wax residues. If you are eating processed or packaged fruits and veggies, be sure to read the labels to avoid excess salt, sugar, and preservatives.
The red family is high in lycopene and antioxidants like resveratrol that combat free radicals, inflammation, and may reduce your risk for developing cancer and heart disease.
Try: Tomatoes, watermelon, strawberries, raspberries, red grapes, radishes, red bell pepper, red onions, red apples, cherries, pink grapefruit, pomegranate, radicchio, and red chili peppers
Orange / Yellow
The orange and yellow family are packed with beta carotene, vitamin A, and vitamin C – powerful antioxidants that neutralize free radicals that can damage your cells.
Try: Carrots, lemons, butternut squash, pumpkin, summer squash, yellow and orange bell peppers, yams / sweet potatoes, corn, bananas, yellow apples, yellow beets, papaya, peaches, mango, pineapple, and oranges.
The darker green the better! Green fruits and veggies are good sources of fiber, potassium, calcium, and iron.
Try: Spinach, broccoli, asparagus, green and romaine lettuces, kale, chard, turnip greens, okra, peas, green beans, zucchini, cucumbers, parsley, kiwi, avocado, and artichokes.
Blue / Purple
The dark pigments of the blue and purple family come from a group of antioxidants called flavonoids, specifically anthocyanin. These nutrients have been shown to help maintain urinary tract health, improve memory, and protect against some cancers.
Try: Blueberries, plums, eggplant, beets, purple cabbage, purple grapes, purple carrots, heirloom purple tomatoes, and red grapes.
White fruits and veggies are few but powerful. Cauliflower has many of the same properties as broccoli, onions are a great pre-biotic (feeding healthy bacteria needed in our gut), and garlic is a natural antibiotic.
Try: Onions, garlic, cauliflower, white asparagus, pears, daikon radish, white beans, and jicama.
Remember to eat a rainbow of fruits and vegetables each day and you will be packing your body full of great vitamins and minerals!
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