A friend who is interested in eating healthier once asked me if he was only going to eat two fruits and one or two vegetables, which are the healthiest. Unfortunately for him and for anyone who was hoping for a definite answer, the reality is eating a variety of fruits and vegetables is the healthiest option. Different varieties supply different nutrients, so by eating as many different kinds as you can, you will be providing your body with more types of vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals.This month’s theme is Eat the Rainbow. Each week a list of fruits and vegetables of a certain color will be listed along with their general nutrition highlights and some recipes. The goal is not to have a day where you eat all red fruits or all green vegetables, but to use these lists to create meals that are filled with many colors.
Eat the Rainbow: Red Fruits and Vegetables
Nutrients: The two main pigments in red fruits and vegetables are lycopene and anthocyanins. Found in tomatoes and watermelon, lycopene is an antioxidant that may help protect against several types of cancer, especially prostate cancer. Anthocyanins are found in foods such as strawberries, raspberries, and red grapes. They are also antioxidants and have protective effects on both cells and the heart.
- Blood oranges
- Pink grapefruit
- Red bell peppers
- Red chili peppers
- Red potatoes
- By Kelli Swensen, Dietetics Student, Sargent College http://blogs.bu.edu/sargentchoice/2012/04/01/adding-color-to-your-diet/