Eating the Rainbow


We all know that getting your 5-a-day is important for health (more if you can manage it!), but getting a varied range of fruit and veg is also important, because of the different vitamins and minerals they can offer the body.

When you were younger, the phrase “eat your greens” was commonly bandied about at mealtimes, but it’s just as important to eat your yellows, blues, purples and reds too.

food rainbow

Different colours indicate an abundance of a specific nutrient, as plants get their colour from the phytochemicals which are present. These nutrients can help ward off assorted conditions and diseases, meaning that a varied diet is imperative.

For example, yellow and orange fruits are high in vitamins C and A; greens are full of vitamins K, B and E.

Eating the rainbow is an easy way of getting a lot of vitamins and minerals, and it doesn’t take too much effort, apart from deciding which fruit and vegetables to buy.

Have a look at the table below for some particular health benefits – this list is by no means exhaustive, there are too many fruits and vegetables to put in one blog!

Colour Fruits/ Vegetable Nutrients Possible Health Benefits
White Bananas
Brown Pears
Dates
White Nectarines
White Peaches
Cauliflower
Onions
Potato
Beta-glucan
Allicin
Beneficial for heart health
Helps cholesterol levels
Lowers risk of some cancers
Yellow/ Orange Lemon
Mango
Grapefruit
Yellow Peaches
Yellow Peppers
Persimmons
Papayas
Pineapples
Oranges
Apricots
Carrots
Sweet Potato
Beta-carotene
Vitamin C
Vitamin A
Carotenoids
Bioflavonoids
Lowers risk of some cancers
Helps vision health
Helps to keep a healthy immune system
Beneficial for heart health
Promote collagen formation and healthy joints
Blue/ Purple Plums
Pomegranate
Raisins
Blueberries
Blackberries
Blackcurrants
Prunes
Purple Grapes
Vitamin C
Flavonoids
Anthocyanin
Phenolic
(both antioxidants)
Helps urinary tract health
Helps memory function
Promotes health ageing
Lowers risk of some cancers
Fight inflammation
Boost immune system activity
Red Cherries
Cranberries
Raspberries
Strawberries
Red Pepper
Watermelon
Red Apples
Lycopene
Anthocyanin
Helps memory function
Lowers risk of some cancers
Helps urinary tract health
Beneficial for heart health
Green Avocado
Green Apples
Green Grapes
Broccoli
Kale
Sprouts
Peas
Courgettes
Broad Beans
Chlorophyll
Lutein
Indoles
Folic Acid
Vitamin C
Vitamins K
Vitamin B
Vitamin E
Forms strong bones and teeth
Lowers risks of some cancers
Fight harmful free radicals
Helps vision health

When looking at what meals I’ll be making throughout the week, especially when it comes to lunches, it’s really great to see what different colours I can get. If you’re stuck in a bit of a nutrition rut, then challenging yourself to eat the rainbow could get you trying and eating new things.

I’d love to see photos of your most colourful meal!

If you have any questions or feedback, please feel free to get in touch via email or Facebook

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