You don’t need to be a nutritionist to know that if your plate is completely beige, chances are you’re not eating right. A colourful plate has become synonymous with healthy eating and a happy body. You’re inundated with tropes like “eat more leafy greens” and “protect yourself from flu with orange food” but it’s important to understand exactly why you’d want all the colours of the rainbow represented on your plate.
What can green veggies do for you that red ones can’t? Why should you pick purple cabbage over yellow peppers to go with this meal?
Here is a rainbow breakdown of the benefits of different coloured foods:
When you think green, you immediately think healthy. And you’d be right. Whether you’re a spinach fiend or a sucker for asparagus, green fruits and veg contain the following body boosters:
- Vitamin C
What does that mean for you? When you pack your plate with cucumbers, green apples, kale, avo or broccoli you’re helping your body lower its risk of cancer, boosting the activities in your immune system and improving digestion in your body.
Orange and Yellow
Who doesn’t love a freshly-squeezed orange juice with breakfast, or a hearty butternut soup to warm you up when it’s pouring outside? Snacking on orange and yellow fruit and veg will help your body obtain carotenoids which gives the food its colour. Here’s how carotenoids help your body:
- Boost overall immunity
- Assist in eye health (carrots really do help you see better after all!)
- Reduce your risk of heart disease
Purple and Blue
When you think food you don’t automatically think purple or blue but there are an array of fruits and veg that can bring this unusual colour to your plate. Eggplant, grapes, plums, blueberries and raisins. So what’s the big deal with purple and blue food? They contain anthocyanins – antioxidants will assist your body with the following:
- Protect cells from damage which in turn reduces your risk of cancer and strokes
- Help preserve your memory as you age
Whether it’s a sweet strawberry or a plate of fresh tomatoes, getting bright red on your plate is certain to help your body get healthier and stronger. In order for red foods to maintain their colour, they contain a pigment called lycopene. Here is what lycopene does for your health:
Whatever it is your after in your journey to healthy eating, remember to ensure that your plate is always colorful. Not only will you be helping your body achieve more and improving your mood, a rainbow plate makes for much better Instagram shots!