My Weekly ‘Renew You’ Challenge – Eat a rainbow everyday! Sounds pretty goofy, doesn’t it? But be honest, it’s not the first time you’ve heard this piece of advice, so why not give it a try? In fact, it’s such a good tip even I’m going to jump on the bandwagon!
Eating a diet that includes of a rainbow of colors (and we’re talking natural colors folks, not those scary chemical additives they use to make neon-bright candy and other foods) helps to ensure that you’re getting a wide variety of phytonutrients—important nutrients found in fruits and vegetables that we need to stay healthy.
Phytonutrients include carotenoids, flavonoids, lignans and polyphenols, all of which include their own nutrients (for example, anthocyanins found in purple and deep red plant foods are a type of flavonoid) that work in a multitude of ways to keep our bodies in great shape. Mostly known for their antioxidant properties (which helps protect healthy cells), phytonutrients also promote a strong immune system and help with detoxification.
So your challenge (and mine!) this week? Let’s try to eat a rainbow every day—and remember, that doesn’t mean a bag of Skittles®! I mean fresh, colorful, natural plant foods. You might think you’re doing a good job by eating a salad every day, but if it only has lettuce, cucumbers and carrots, you’re missing out on the red, yellow, blue and purple ingredients. Toss some raisins into your salad, have some red and yellow bell peppers with dinner, and snack on some blueberries for dessert. Oh, and don’t forget white—cauliflower, white beans, white eggplant, and even jicama can make your rainbow complete, so let’s get started!