Did you know there are over two thousand known phytonutrients, which are active substances that give fruits and vegetables their color, flavor, smell and natural disease resistance? Our phytonutrient consumption is associated with reduced rates of many different cancers. Think color! Think the rainbow!! Blueberries, oranges, lemons, herbs, carrots….there are so many different choices to consider.
According to Dr. Don Colbert, phytonutrients in fruits and vegetables can be grouped according to color. Each group has it’s own set of unique protective benefits.
- Orange: carrots, mangoes, cantaloupes, pumpkin, sweet potatoes, yams, squash, and apricots all have carotenoids, which help prevent cancer and heart disease.
- Red: tomatoes, watermelon, guava, red grapefruit, all contain a powerful carotenoid called lycopene, linked to prevention of heart disease and prostate cancer.
- Red/Purple: blueberries, blackberries, hawthorn berries, raspberries, grapes, eggplants, red cabbage and red wine contain a powerful flavonoid called anthocyanidin, which contains approximately 50 times the antioxidant activity of vitamin C and 20 times more powerful than vitamin E.
- Orange/Yellow: oranges, tangerines, lemons, limes, yellow grapefruit, papaya, pineaple and nectarines are rich in vitamin C and protect us against free-radical damage.
- Yellow/Green: Spinach, kale, collards, mustard greens, turnip greens, romaine lettuce, leeks and peas are typically rich in lutein and zeaxanthin, which reduces the risk of macular degeneration.
- Green: broccoli, cabbage, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, watercress, bok choy, kale, collard greens, and mustard greens are considered cruciferous vegetables with anti-cancer properties.
Remember, living foods exist in a raw or close-to-raw state and can make your eyes sparkle, your hair shine, and a glow to your skin! Who doesn’t want that??
It’s time to take back our food choices and how we eat them so we can become vibrant, healthy people! Now is the time!