Eating plant foods in an array of vibrant colors packs the biggest nutrition punch. A food’s color signals its unique nutrition claim to fame and the more color on your plate, the more key nutrients for your body. Make these shades of color the star of your daily meal plan to boost the nutritional value of the meal—and dress up the visual appeal too!
Have you had your dark green leafy vegetables today? Romaine lettuce, spinach, Swiss chard and kale are nutrition superstars. They’re loaded with cancer-protective nutrients like the carotenoid antioxidants beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin, which may block the early stages of cancer cell development. Dark greens are also rich in vitamin K and folate which are necessary to prevent certain birth defects. Look for Weis Quality Baby Spinach that’s washed and ready to use in salads and sandwiches or stirred into soup or pasta dishes.
Bright orange fruits and vegetables boast high levels of the carotenoid called beta-carotene. This antioxidant searches for and removes damaging free radicals from the body. It also helps maintain your skin’s integrity and reduces fine lines. Mangoes supply an excellent source of vitamin A as beta-carotene in each one cup serving. Savor the distinctive flavor of juicy mangos alone or in smoothies, with yogurt or sliced over cold cereal. Or try slicing into spicy salsas and relishes. Fresh mangos come in all shades of green, yellow and red, with many showing multi-colored skin. When selecting a mango, choose one that “gives” when gently squeezed.
Deep Blues and Purples
Are you looking for the fountain of youth? Then add the power of blue and purple produce to your plate! The blue hue of blueberries, grapes, eggplant and plums signals powerful antioxidant activity from phenols and anthocyanins linked to slowing the aging process plus heart and digestive health. Dried plums also rank as one of the highest antioxidant fruits. For an ultra-convenient and nutrient-packed snack, choose individually-wrapped Sunsweet® Ones™. Just four of these naturally sweet and chewy California plums supply a good source of vitamin A and fiber with only 100 calories.
Light Green and Yellow
The lighter shades of green found in avocadoes, kiwi and pistachios supply lutein, an antioxidant shown to help prevent age-related vision decline. Go nutty over perfectly-roasted and lightly-salted Wonderful® Pistachios. Pistachios, packed with 20 essential nutrients, help keep your heart healthy and your waistline slender. Just one 49-kernel serving supplies appetite-controlling monounsaturated fat plus three grams of fiber. This health nut also contains polyphenols that may protect your cells against oxidative stress and inflammation. Pistachios are great to snack on or try crushing them to use as a crust for fish, chicken or pork.
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