By: John Verlinden
I love our rainbow flag – the rich diversity it symbolizes and those stunning hues! It’s autumn in New England; thousands come from all over to marvel at the vibrant palette of trees, bushes and grasses. Color is awesome! We all have our favorites and we use them to make a statement about who we are – to jazz up our wardrobes and to create just the right mood in our homes.
But hey, don’t stop there! While we’re at it, let’s add some color to our dinner plates. It’s easy to do and it can significantly improve our health. For years we’ve been told that eating five servings of fruits and vegetables every day is important. But new research now suggests that it’s just as important to eat a variety of them. The more colors on our plate, the broader range of nutrients we consume giving us the best benefits, so eat a rainbow.
Consuming fruits and vegetables has long been shown to protect us from certain cancers, diabetes and heart disease, but each different color group provides unique nutrients that nourish our bodies in distinct ways.
The natural pigments that give our fruits and vegetables their color contain antioxidants, flavonoids and other phytonutrients (fancy names for really healthy stuff). These distinctive nutrients contain special anti-aging properties and cell protection functions, and they work together to promote overall health.
For example, REDS like tomatoes, beets and strawberries protect against urinary tract infections and benefit our joints. YELLOWS – carrots, squash, cantaloupes, etc., on the other hand, boost our immune system and protect vision. GREENS – collards, broccoli, green grapes, help to lower blood pressure and cholesterol, strengthen bones and improve digestion. WHITES – potatoes, onions and garlic, bananas, promote our body’s anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial activity. BLUES – Eggplant, blueberries, plums, enhance our blood and improve memory.
And, if that’s not enough reasons, just think about the beautiful presentation all those gorgeous colors will make at your next dinner party.
Until next time – ¡Mucho Gusto!, ¡Muchas Gracias! y ¡Buen Provecho!