By Emma Pearce-Mogridge and Trang Ho-Nguyen 

It’s no secret that colourful fruit and vegetables help strengthen your immune system, promote a healthy heart, create radiant skin and promote a longer lifespan.  

But do you ever wonder why the colours are so important? Me too. So, I found out why, and would love to share it with you. 

Red:  Red foods have phytochemicals, such as lycopene and ellagic acid, which are found to reduce the risk of certain types of cancers, heart diseases and diabetes. It can also improve the quality of your skin, making it look and feel radiant. Some healthy red foods to add to your diet are beets, red onions, strawberries and watermelon. Not only are they delicious, but they provide many health benefits.  

Orange and yellow:  Orange and yellow foods have carotenoid. Carotenoid can help reduce the risk of cancer, is valuable for eye health, and promotes healthy growth and development in children. Citrus fruit can help decrease the risk of a stroke and blood flow because they contain the phytonutrient, hesperidin. They also contain nutrients, including potassium, vitamin C, fiber, lycopene and more. Pineapples, cantaloupes and mangos are tasty orange foods to add to your snack time.  

Green:  Green foods are detoxifiers, hence the popularity of the green smoothie. They help give the immune system a boost and restore the body’s energy. Green foods are very high in minerals and contain important nutrients, such as calcium, potassium and vitamins B, C and K. They have many nutrients that help protect the immune system from viruses and bacteria. Easily add avocado, asparagus and kale into your meals to help detoxify your body.   

Blue and purple: Blue and purple foods are the king of antioxidants! They contain the most antioxidants in comparison to the other foodcolours. Blue and purple foods contain anthocyanins and resveratrol, which can help reduce the risk of high blood pressure, aids with memory and protects cells against damage. Yummy blue and purple foods to try are blueberries, blackberries and grapes.  

White: White may not be part of the rainbow, but there are many benefits to white foods. White foods have anthoxanthins that help decrease inflammation and contribute to heart health, such as lower risk of cancer, reduced cholesterol and lower blood pressure. For example, cauliflower contains a lot of sulforaphane, which is known to be an anti-cancer compound. Some white foods to give a try are cauliflower, mushrooms, and garlic.  

*Please note, this is information is for overall health and wellness, and should not be taken instead of a doctor’s recommendation.

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