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Table of Contents  ||   Previous:   Fight the Effects of High-Saturated Fat Meals with Walnuts  ||   Next:   A List of Different Varieties of Apples

How can you boost your health? Eat in color!

—by Cindy Kirchhoff
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I love black and white photography. And there’s nothing like putting on a crisp, white shirt with new, black pants. But when it comes to the rest of my world, I pretty much want it in color.

Turns out that color is a good indicator of the benefits you’re gaining from your food. Look at your plate next time you eat. Is it brimming with bright, vibrant colors? Or is it, umm, a little bland looking? The interesting correlation is that foods with gorgeous colors also do more to safeguard your health.

Think of a salad made of iceberg lettuce. Washed out, barely green, barely there leaves. No wonder people who endured salads made of iceberg lettuce decided salads weren’t something they liked. Or worse they buried them in high fat, unhealthy salad dressings to try to give salads some taste.

Make a salad of fresh baby spring greens with its deep purples and dark greens. Add some bright red tomatoes, red pepper, orange carrots and brown, earthy mushrooms. Looks better doesn’t it? Tastes better, too. But more important it’s much better for your health. Iceberg lettuce offers virtually no nutritional benefits. Dark leafy greens give you a bounty of vitamins and minerals plus studies are showing that they even may help prevent cataracts.

The same correlation is true for fruits. A variety of colors will give you a range of nutrients that cover the bases in helping you get or stay well. Blueberries are rich in vitamins A, C, E and beta-carotene plus provide potassium, manganese and magnesium. Studies show that blueberries also provide the most antioxidants, which help protect your health and limit changes stemming from age-related diseases. Black raspberries’ ability to fight cancer appears to be 40 percent higher than even blueberries or strawberries. Bright orange clementines pack a powerful punch of vitamin C and beta-carotene in a small, full-of-flavor, easy-to-eat package.

I love the very dark, almost black grapes better than green grapes or the lighter purple ones. All grapes contain flavonoids, but the deeper the color, the higher the concentration of these health-enhancing properties. Flavonoids are present in a variety of fruits and vegetables, and the deeper the hue, the more they contain.

Getting plenty of flavonoids is important because they help reduce your risk of heart disease, cancer, asthma and stroke. Like other antioxidants, they also help fight free radicals that damage cells. But they go beyond this and apparently also have antihistamine, antimicrobial, memory and even mood-enhancing properties.

In addition, scientists already have proof that antioxidants, such as flavonoids, protect against and even reverse the cognitive decline seen as a person ages. So, the more antioxidants you get in your food, the better.

Besides, there’s nothing prettier and tastier than a dish made up of vibrant colors. A favorite stir fry of my family’s contains all the different colors of peppers. Not only is it a healthy and attractive dish, it tastes amazing. A fruit salad made up of a blend of fresh, colorful fruit also tastes better and is better for you. Our salads always have a blend of veggies and lettuces (but no iceberg!) in them.

Have fun finding ways to make your food look more colorful, then discover the bonus of the glowing health those vibrant foods will give you.

Table of Contents  ||   Previous:   Fight the Effects of High-Saturated Fat Meals with Walnuts  ||   Next:   A List of Different Varieties of Apples

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