Eat the Rainbow By Rachel Schwartzman #WellbeingWednesday
It`s been a colourful weeks here in Toronto. First, we had a wonderful Pride celebration and then a Canada Day party. So, for today’s Wellbeing Wednesday tip, I thought I would discuss “Eating the Rainbow” to get you all thinking about eating colourful foods on a dily basis. When we eat a variety of colour, we ensure we are getting a variety of nutrients. Kids (and adults) love eating colourful foods, so be sure to include some with each meal. Here are some of my favorites from the spectrum.
Red: This would be a toss-up between Cherries and Strawberries. These fruit sensations are both in season, and loved by those big and small. They are low in the glycemic index, making them a perfect snack for balancing blood sugar levels. They are also a pigment rich fruit, making them an antioxidant powerhouse packed with vitamins and minerals, specifically vitamin C. Head on out to a local strawberry patch and pick your own. They are wonderful to freeze and enjoy for several months to follow, if they last that long.
Orange: Carrots are a root vegetable loved by all and contain a high amount of beta-carotene. This vitamin is a key nutrient important in maintaining a healthy immune system supporting vision. It has an affinity for lung health and fighting against respiratory infections.
Nothing says Yellow like Lemons. A healthy way to start your morning is a glass of warm water with ¼ wedge of freshly squeezed lemon. It stimulates the liver, promotes digestion, detoxifies the body and makes the body alkaline. Maybe it’s my Mediterranean roots, but I add lemon to everything; salad dressings, smoothies, marinades, even baked good recipes.
We’ve all be told to eat our Greens, and it’s true. Dark green vegetables are packed full of phytonutrients. They are rich in vitamins and minerals, antioxidants, support the liver, cleanse the blood and provide excellent energy for our cells. It does not really matter what kind you eat; kale, chard, broccoli, spinach, arugula or how you eat them; raw, steamed, sautéed, blended, the point is you just, eat them!
Blueberries, for Blue of course! This fruit is native to Canada and has been used by Indigenous peoples for centuries. Blueberries scored highest in total antioxidant capacity per serving when compared to 80+ other food items. They are rich in antioxidants and are well known for their anti-cancer, anti-aging, memory enhancing, immune building, and anti-inflammatory properties.
Purple is for Purple Cabbage. Part of the Brassica family, this cruciferous vegetable has amazing anti-cancer properties, protective for both women and men’s health. The rich color reflects its concentration of anthocyanin polyphenols, giving it more phytonutrients than green cabbage.
So there you have it. Make it your goal to add more colour to your diet by “Eating the Rainbow”. Now let’s just hope the sun continues shining! Have a great week.
Rachel Schwartzman is a licensed Naturopathic Doctor, Doula and Acupuncturist. She practices in Toronto and can be reached at 416-371-3422. To learn more about Dr. Rachel take a peek at rachelschwartzman.com