2022 is fast approaching with the usual dietary resolution trends:
“Start the new year right with a juice detox cleanse!”
“Lose 20 pounds by eating 20 almonds a day for 20 days!”
“New Year, new you. Ditch the regular milk. It’s oat milk time!”
Dietary trends and fads make healthy living intimidating. For every book that says don’t eat red meat, there’s just as many highlighting the benefits of a red meat-only diet.
It’s difficult to know which diet to trust, which nutrition facts to focus on, and make healthy eating a sustainable habit in your life.
As we tell our patients here at Aayu, the best way to eat healthy is to eat the rainbow!
That’s right! We’ve looked at the research and found what foods to focus on, why you should implement each in your regular diet, and the nutritional benefit each food group (color) has.
RED (Tomatoes, Grapefruit, Resperies, Watermelon)
Red fruits and veggies are carotenoid lycopene dense. Carotenoid lycopene flushes the body’s free radicals and prevents oxidative stress.
The fewer red fruits and veggies you eat, the more likely you are to enter into oxidative stress. Constant oxidative stress wears your body down and can lead to serious ailments like:
Atherosclerosis – hardening of the blood
High blood pressure
See a red fruit or veggie on your next trip to the grocery store? Go ahead and pick it up
YELLOW/GREEN (Avocado, Collard Greens, Corn, Honeydew Melon)
Yellow/Green fruits and veggies are a phenomenal source of carotenoids lutein. Carotenoid lutein shows evidence of reducing the risk of many degenerative macular diseases.
So if your fruit and veg have a greenish, yellowish tint to them, they’re likely to help your body hold up against common aging issues like:
Make 2022 the year of prolonging your youth by throwing some green/yellow foods in your grocery basket.
ORANGE (Carrots, Mangos, Sweet Potatoes, Squash)
Orange fruits, veggies, and stem tubers contain loads of alpha-carotene and beta-carotene.
Alpha-carotene is one of the strongest defenses against any type of cancer formation. Beta-carotene is converted into Vitamin A and is vital for vision health, cell division, and building strong immunities.
Throwing a mix of carrots and sweet potatoes into your dinner bowl will reduce your chances of cardiovascular and cancerous mortality. As an added benefit, they will:
Work as an antioxidant
Prevent blood clots
ORANGE/YELLOW (Pineapple, Tangerines, Peaches, Star Fruit)
Orange/yellow fruits and veggies are saturated in beta cryptothanxin. Beta cryptothanxin enhances a body’s cells’ ability to communicate.
Healthy cells and healthy cell communication are crucial to performing maintenance and preventing sickness in the body. Snacking on any orange/yellow foods will help your body fight.
Next time you’re in the produce aisle, keep an eye out for orange/yellow fruits and veggies!
RED/PURPLE (Blueberries, Purple Grapes, Beets, Cranberries)
Even if they stain your teeth, red/purple foods are essential for healthy blood flow.
Loaded with a special antioxidant, called anthocyanins various red/purple berries and roots prevent clotting in your blood and prevent:
Picking up a package of grapes and berries during your next stop at the store will do your body a whole lot of good.
GREEN (Brussel Sprouts, Bok Choi, Kale, Cabbage)
Leafy green vegetables and green heads of vegetables contain the chemicals sulforaphane and isocyanate. Sulforaphane and isocyanate act as titanium shields against cancerous cells in your body.
Warding off any form of cancer or cardiovascular disease is one major benefit of consistently eating dark green vegetables. Added benefits to your health are:
Slowing tumor growth
Blocking DNA mutation
If your mom always encouraged you to “eat your broccoli!” she was onto something.
WHITE/GREEN (Onions, Celery, Pears, Garlic)
Though on the stinkier side, white/green foods are an excellent source of anti-tumor and antioxidant nutrients.
Foods like garlic and onions may make you cry, but not as much as a stage 4 cancer diagnosis would. Adding white/green fruits and vegetables to your diet will defend you from serious cancers like:
Even if you have to sautee or roast your white/green foods it will pay huge dividends in your body’s defense against cancer.
The first step to consuming a healthy diet is making your approach as simple as possible.
It’s not about what foods will make you look good, or will help you lose weight. It’s about consuming nutrient-dense foods that will protect your body from illness, boost your immune system, and make you feel fantastic.
Now head to the store and fill your bags with every color of the rainbow!