Guest Blogger Patty James on Eating the Rainbow

ROYGBIV: The Color of Health

By Patty James

Why is it important to eat lots of different colored fruits and vegetables? Because each colored vegetable and fruit has unique properties and there is strong evidence that there are interactions between the colors that are beneficial to your health. Eating by the Rainbow is vitally important to your well-being.

Here are the colors:

Red foods contain lycopene that helps rid the body of damaging free radicals, protects against prostate cancer, as well as heart and lung disease. The red foods are loaded with antioxidants thought to protect against heart disease by preventing blood clots and may also delay the aging of cells in the body.

Tomatoes

Beets

Radishes

Red cabbage

Cherries

Cranberries

Pink grapefruit

Red grapes

Red peppers

Pomegranates

Red potatoes

Watermelon

Raspberries

Red apples

Rhubarb

Strawberries

Orange and Yellow foods contain alpha carotene, which protects against cancer, but also contain beta-carotene, which the body converts to vitamin A protecting the skin against free-radical damage. Beta-carotene is also good for night vision.

Yams and sweet potatoes

Carrots

Yellow apples

Apricots

Butternut squash

Cantaloupe

Carrots

Grapefruit

Lemons

Mangoes

Nectarines

Oranges and Tangerines

Papayas

Peaches

Pears

Yellow peppers

Persimmons

Pineapple

Pumpkin

Yellow summer or winter squash

Sweet corn

Yellow tomatoes

Green foods contain the chemicals that help ward off cancer by inhibiting carcinogens. Chlorophyll is the component that makes plant green, and is purifying in the body. Many green foods also contain calcium and minerals.

Kale, spinach and other leafy greens

Green apples

Artichokes

Sea vegetables

Asparagus

Avocados

Green beans

Broccoli

Brussels sprouts

Green cabbage

Cucumbers

Green grapes

Kiwi

Lettuce

Limes

Green onions

Peas

Zucchini

Blue, Indigo and Violet foods contain the compound anthocyanins that not only give food their color but also have been shown to reduce the risk of high blood pressure and increasing heart health.

Blueberries

Blackberries

Purple grapes

Figs

Raisins

Plums, fresh and dried

Eggplant

White, though not part of the color of the rainbow, foods contain properties that have anti-tumor qualities, such as allicin in onions as well as other health-improving antioxidants such as the flavanoids. The white foods, bananas and potatoes, contain potassium as well.

Bananas

Onions

Cauliflower

Garlic

Ginger

Jicama

Mushrooms

Potatoes

Parsnips

Turnips

So how do you do incorporate these fruits and vegetables into your daily eating habits?

Here are some sample menus for you to get you started:

Breakfast:

An orange. Sauté 1/2 red pepper, ½ onion, 2 shitake mushrooms, 2 cloves garlic. Add 3 cups leafy greens (spinach leaves are fine) and 3 eggs. Cook until eggs are done and serve.

Strawberries. Oatmeal made with cubed butternut squash or pureed pumpkin, topped with raw walnut pieces and raw pumpkin seeds.

Lunch:

Turkey sandwich on whole grain bread with sprouts, lettuce, tomato slices, avocado and grated carrots. Serve with a 2-cup salad made with romaine lettuce and raw cauliflower, broccoli and garbanzo beans.

Spinach salad topped with black olives, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, green onions, and cauliflower. Add beans or chicken if you like. Toss with fresh lemon juice and either olive oil or flax oil or a combination of the two. Sprinkle fresh parsley, chopped, on top.

Dinner:

Grilled fish or chicken breast or black beans and brown rice (protein). Coleslaw made with green and red cabbage with red onions and grated carrots. Baked yam.

Pasta primavera made with spinach fettuccini, sautéed red peppers, onions, garlic, zucchini, carrots, and whatever else is in season.

Snack:

1 cup blueberries and cantaloupe

Jicama slices with salsa and Celery with hummus or peanut or almond butter

Pineapple chunks and banana slices

Raw veggies with your favorite dip. Hummus is a good choice.

Tangerine slices with herb tea

Remember that you need 5-9 cups of vegetables and fruits a day for good health. Make sure at least half of your veggies are raw. Don’t forget that juicing can incorporate many colored fruits and veggies easily and may be a good choice for those who may not be able to chew raw fruits and veggies.

Patty is a Certified Natural Chef with a Master’s degree in Holistic Nutrition and was founder and director of the Patty James Cooking School and Nutrition Center, the first certified organic cooking school and nutrition center in the country. She created the Patty James Health Guide, a guide to life-long healthy eating and lifestyle. Patty is a frequent guest speaker in public and private schools around the US, the Clinton Foundation in New York, as well as to health practitioners and organizations. Patty runs Shine the Light On America’s Kids, an organization whose mission is to shine the light on all aspects of kids health in America. She is the author of More Vegetables, Please!

Website: www.PattyJames.com and www.ShineTheLightOnKids.org

More Vegetables, Please! can be purchased from www.amazon.com and through any major bookseller


Bookmark and Share

Subscribe to the Mothering.com Blogs Feed

This entry was posted
on Thursday, May 20th, 2010 at 1:50 pm and is filed under Uncategorized.
You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

Both comments and pings are currently closed.