Have you ever wondered what significance the colors in your food holds? Well I’m not talking about the artificial coloring added in the food, but the real colors, that distinguishes any particular fruit or veggie from others. Different fruits and vegetables are categorized according to their colors and nutrients. Plant produces natural compounds knows as Phytonutrients (scientists call it chemicals), that protects it from sun and insects, but for human those Phytonutrients provides anti-oxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. Different color of food, have different kind of Phytonutrients.
Today we will be discussing the Tri color of Indian flag as it is Independence Day on 15th august. Although there are so many colors of fruits and vegetables available, but for now we will be focusing mainly on the tri color of Indian flag.
Orange color food
Orange colored fruits and veggies are high in Carotenoids, it’s a type of Phytonutrients that acts as an anti-oxidants.
Orange food has benefits like:
- It improves immune health.
- Reduces risk of heart diseases.
- Promotes good eye health (due to high vitamin A present in Orange fruits and veggies).
- Filter UV light(maybe that’s why sunscreen lotions have oranges on their packs)
- It has been found that Orange food also helps in burning belly fat.
- It has Alpha and Beta carotene(types of Carotenoids) which ensure healthy cells.
Orange colored fruits and vegetables are easily available and few examples are Oranges (off course), pumpkin, bell pepper, chick peas, papaya, carrots, corn (well right now we are categorizing both yellow and orange together), pineapple, sweet potatoes, peaches and lot more.
My recommendation to you is Dried Apricot, also known as Kubani in Hindi. It’s easily available in all the seasons and are good source of potassium and magnesium. It can replace your craving for eating candy (thinking of orange colored candies?) and at the same time give you tons of fibers, that promotes good liver and stomach health.
White color food
Well, White color may not be as bright as Orange or as vivacious as Green, but these are definitely packed with high Phytonutrients. White colored food contains Allicin and Epigallocatechin gallate( that was not easy to write) or commonly known as EGCG which are type of Phytonutrients.
White color food are great because:
- It helps in lowering the cholesterol & blood pressure.
- Helps in fighting the infection.
- Improve digestion.
- Are high in iron, vitamin B, potassium and calcium.
- Great source of Protein.
Some examples include Cauliflower, ginger, garlic, turnips, white potatoes, raddish, banana (definitely a peeled one), onions. Surprisingly, Milk (and milk products) and eggs also falls in this category, although they may not contain Phytonutrients but are high in protein and calcium. Vegans can opt out for Tofu, which are made of soy milk.
My recommendation is Curd and Banana, mix it up with jaggery powder to make it sweet (less)and healthy.
Green color food
When you open your refrigerator, green is the most common color you will see there. This color food contains Lutein and EGCG (I dare not to write that again), which are types of Phytonutrients.
Green Food are amazing as:
- It promotes good digestive health.
- Reduces risk of obesity (if you eat healthy, you will stay healthy)
- Keep your blood pressure in check and also keeps heart healthy.
- Reduces risk of type-2 diabetes.
- Are ultrarich in potassium, fibers, vitamin A, B (folate), C, E & K.
- Helps in detoxifies our body and restore energy.
- Some research suggests that Green food have cancer fighting capabilities.
Some examples include Sprouts, grapes, lime, kiwi, peas, spinach, cucumber (try smoothie), broccoli, gourd (of various types), herbs like basil (holy), mints and so much more.
My recommendation is Green apple. It may be little sour as compare to regular red apples but are not any less in salubrious properties. Green apple are easily available in monsoon.
Now you may have got a little glimpse of how any specific color hold significance in our diet. Health experts suggest that your plate should contain colors of the rainbow. Today I have just discussed 3 colors, that represents the colors of Indian flag, but there are lot more colors you can add to your diet. We shall discuss more colors like purple, red, brown and more in the future.
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Until Then, stay healthy and remember to smile.