COLORIFIC YOUR DIET
Written by Maria Dello
When mom said “eat your vegetables” perhaps she was on to something Rich in nutrients, high in fiber, full of anti-oxidants, fruits and vegetables are the source of life. When my patient reports they eat vegetables , I often learn it could mean a pickle on a hamburger or a piece of lettuce that decorates the plate.
Greens, purples, reds, yellows, and oranges, Colorific your plate. We now know the national cancer institute recommends five fruits and vegetables daily, why all the color? Each color has certain chemistry that provides specific nutrients to enhance our well being. You can reduce the signs of aging by brightening up your diet. You should be adding vibrant colors to your diet such as glossy red peppers, bright orange carrots, deep green broccoli, crisp lettuce, and velvety blueberries. Add more color to your diet and receive the benefits of all the antioxidants, for example:
Red – tomatoes offer lycopene, a carotene which is important for heart and prostate health.
Orange – winter squash contains alpha and beta carotenes.
Green – broccoli helps produce enzymes to fight against cancer.
Yellow – oranges are loaded with vitamin C which is especially good for immunity.
Purple – blueberries contain anthocyamins, a powerful antioxidant.
Q. I find in the winter time, I just don’t feel like eating salads, I know I need my greens but
I almost force myself to make a salad or order one in a restaurant, I find myself adding unhealthy salad dressings to make it a treat, how can I make it more appealing.
A. Just like the seasons change, so do our bodies, our systems need to rhythmically coincide with the changes that occur in nature. Try a vegetable soup or try baking your vegetables, you can add some tomato sauce and that could be a tasty way for the kids to eat a meal rich in nutrients.
Q.I recently started to eat blueberries, I heard they are very healthy, but I don’t see them in the grocery store as frequently.
A. The power of blue, Blueberries have the highest level of anti-oxidants of any fruit, for now they are out of season, however this powerful fruit can be found frozen and organic in your local grocery store, you will still benefit from the nutrients, and they can be enjoyed in your favorite shake or oatmeal, sprinkle on the cinnamon and what a delicious healthy way to start off your day.
Q. I have my husband drinking pomegranate juice, every chance I get I fill his glass up, he has a family history of heart disease and I want to make sure he is doing something preventative, can pomegranate juice really help his heart.
A. There is research published demonstrating pomegranates beneficial impact on the cardiovascular system.
However, solely drinking the juice isn’t the answer regarding your husband family’s history of heart disease, there are benefits of drinking this ancient fruit.
Diet, regular exercise must be in his daily regimen along with getting regular check ups with his doctor. Another factor when choosing the right juice make sure to read the ingredient label, you could be choosing one with large amounts of sugar or high fructose corn syrup and that could be adding on the pounds.