Wellness Wednesday by Nurse Fiona- Phytonutrients ‘Eat the rainbow’
Phytonutrients- Eat all the colors of the rainbow
The more colors we eat in our diet, the more compounds known as phytonutrients are being delivered to our cells. Plants generate phytonutrients to defend themselves against consumption. These defense compounds when consumed by humans have a profound impact on our health.
Red foods such as tomatoes contain lycopene, which has been linked to a reduction of heart disease and prostate cancer
Orange foods such as carrots contain beta-carotene which benefits our immune system, promotes healthy vision and is a pre-cursor to Vitamin A, the anti ageing nutrient.
Green foods such as broccoli contain chlorophyll, which can help curb hunger and balance our blood sugar levels.
You can find a particular type of phytonutrient known as polyphenols in red wine, coffee and high quality dark chocolate. Polyphenols help to improve heart health, prevent cancer cells and have even shown to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s.
Nurse Fiona’s tips on how to increase phytonutrients in your diet
- Eat at least 5 vegetables per day and aim to make these different colors to ensure you are getting as many phytonutrients as possible
- Prepare snacks such as carrots, cucumber, celery, red peppers and cherry tomatoes. These keep well in glass jars for the day
- Avocados are rich in phytonutrients and a quick delicious way to ensure you are getting phytonutrients and also essential fatty acids
- Roast a whole tray of colorful vegetables drizzled with coconut oil or olive oil, salt pepper and chopped herbs. These roasted vegetables can be used for days