We all know that eating lots of fruit and veg is good for us, but did you know that eating from different ‘colour groups’ is a great way to help provide balance in range of fruit and veg that we eat?
There really is a rainbow of colours in our common fruit and veg and a large amount of it is usually available much of the year round.
These foods contain anthocyanins which are powerful antioxidants that may cut your risk of heart disease and stroke by inhibiting clot formation. This group includes aubergines, blackberries, blueberries, cherries, cranberries, plums, prunes, grapes, strawberries, raspberries, red apples, red cabbage, red pears and red peppers.
Green foods pack natural chemicals called isothiocyanates and indoles which stimulate production of cancer-fighting liver enzymes. This group includes broccoli, sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, chinese cabbage, kale and Swiss chard.
Along with the Orange group, these foods can also provide protection for your eyes as they contain lutein and zeaxanthin which may help fight cataracts and macular degeneration. This group includes avocados, courgettes, cucumbers, green beans, green peas, green/yellow peppers, honeydew melons, kiwis and lettuce.
These foods are rich in flavonoids which can help protect against cell damage. This group includes artichokes, asparagus, celery, chives, endive, garlic, leeks onions and mushrooms. Garlic and onions in particular contain allicin, a tumour fighter.
The beta carotene in orange foods boosts eye and skin health and may help decrease the risk of certain cancers. This group includes apricots, cantaloupe melons, carrots, mangos, pumpkins, sweet potatoes and winter squash.
These cousins to the orange family are rich in beta cryptoxanthin, an antioxidant that protects cells against damage. This group includes nectarines, oranges, papayas, peaches, pineapples, tangerines and yellow grapefruits.
Most studies suggests that by eating one of each of the above colour groups each day is great way to balance your intake of overall nutrition. Of course, this isn’t always possible but if you try and eat a wide variety of different fruit and veg on a regular basis, you’ll be well on your way to a healthier you!