Eating The Rainbow

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Eating The Rainbow

Did you ever stroll through a farmer’s market or even the produce aisle at your local grocery store looking at… color? Mother Nature provided an enticing rainbow of colors in fruits and vegetables to attract our attention. You may have heard the expression, “Eat the rainbow,” and wondered what it meant. So let’s dive in a little and see what wisdom we can extract from Mother Nature’s palette.

You may have noticed that fruits and vegetables cluster in five basic color groups – red, orange/yellow, blue/purple, green and white/brown. Since each color family excels at providing different nutritional goodies, eating the rainbow is a reasonable way to approximate getting a range of vitamins and minerals.

At a minimum, the more you notice the colors of your foods, the more likely you are to benefit from the broadest spectrum of nutrition. It reminds me of a time, years ago, when I prepared packaged fish sticks and potato puffs for dinner. I recall looking down at my plate and noticing that everything I was eating was a flat sort of brown. I don’t eat that way anymore. Today, I like my meals popping with color.

Let’s look at each color and its nutritional gifts in more detail. You may not recognize all these micronutrients, but rest assured that your body benefits from these vitamins and minerals.

Vitamin C, lycopene, anthocyanin, ellagic acid and quercetin are found in fruits and vegetables, like berries, apples, watermelon, tomatoes, red peppers, that are red.

Vitamins A and C, potassium and beta carotene are found in fruits and vegetables that, like citrus fruits, carrots and corn are yellow or orange.

Magnesium, iron, folate, Vitamin K, Vitamin B and Vitamin E, calcium, potassium and more are found in fruits and vegetables, like broccoli, avocado and cucumber, that are green.

Vitamin C, potassium and folate are found in fruits and vegetables, such as red cabbage, grapes and eggplant, that are blue or purple.

Even white or brown fruits and vegetables like garlic, onions, mushrooms and cauliflower offer Vitamin C, flavonoids, allium and sulforaphane.

Don’t make yourself crazy focusing on “eating the rainbow”. Just aim for a nice variety of colors and you’ll be improving your nutritional profile automatically. That’s good advice before, during and after your adjustable gastric balloon procedure.

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Author: Rebeca Espinoza

Rebeca Espinoza writes about health, fitness and weight loss for Spatz Medical, makers of the Spatz3 Adjustable Gastric Balloon.  You can find her on Google+ or at rebeca@spatzmedical.com. Like the Spatz3 Adjustable Gastric Balloon page on Facebook or follow us on Pinterest for healthy eating tips, inspiring quotes, videos and photos and more.

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