Hope you all have been “catching a rainbow” daily!

We have looked at orange, green, and red and finally come to the last colours of the rainbow –  blue/purple.

Blue/purple foods may not seem as easy to find and to add on your food plate. Contrary to popular belief, just as other colours, blue/purple foods offer many health benefits. Their phytochemicalsanthocyanins, are known to promote urinary tract health, memory function, and reduce certain risks of cancer.

The anthocyanins are also what give the blue/purple foods their mysterious colours.

So the darker the blue hue, the higher the phytochemical concentration. Moreover, the richness of the colour is actually a sign that the food is ripe and ready to eat!

Anthocyanin rich foods:

Fruits: plums, raisins, prunes, purple figs, blackberries, and blueberries.

Veggies: eggplant (especially the skin), purple asparagus, purple cabbage, and potatoes.

  • Blueberries – high in vitamin C and E, antioxidants, and dietary fibre. Eating blueberries has been linked to improved cholesterol, increased urinary-tract health, and a boost in brain function.
  • Blackberries – high in dietary fibre, vitamin K (promotes calcium absorption and bone health), and high in antioxidants (important for overall health!).
  • Eggplant – excellent source of dietary fibre, vitamin C, calcium, and phosphorus that promotes healthy bones and teeth.
  • Plums –high in vitamin B (helps metabolise carbohydrates, proteins, and fat) and vitamin K (helps promote bone health).

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Never judge something solely based on its appearance.

While colour can give you a good idea about what lies beneath an eggplant’s skin, a food’s hue does not tell all, and it is certainly not an exclusive indicator of phytochemical content. While some phytochemicals are pigments that give colour, others are colourless.

The major class of phytochemicals are the flavonoids – free radical fighting antioxidants, which for the most part are colourless and can be found in most fruits and veggies.

Eating a rainbow daily will not only give your body all the health promoting phytochemicals to support optimal health but will also make your plate more appetising!

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Try to find ways to perk up your plate with different colours in every meal:

Breakfast : scrambled eggs with red peppers, purple onions, and white mushrooms.

Lunch : a salad with spinach, purple asparagus, and shredded carrots.

Dinner : a pizza with with sun dried tomatoes, eggplants, and olives.

Snack : raisins and blueberries.

A nutrition expert (MSc.) who specializes in sports nutrition & weight management

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