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News Story
Updated: 10/03/2016 08:41:43PM

Eat a rainbow every day

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Judy E. Buss

Eggplant and tomato

Spinach and carrot salad

Tropical fruit salad


Judy Buss, nutrition columnist.

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A display of fresh vegetables and fruit always dazzles the eye with its beauty; however, many people don’t realize that the color of produce is due to naturally occurring powerful and protective phytochemicals (plant chemicals). Standard nutrition labels list only a fraction of the number of nutrients present in the food. While fresh vegetables and fruit do not come with labels, frozen ones do. Labels focus on calories, fat content, cholesterol, sugar, and sodium and may mention only four additional nutrients. Such labeling actually gives consumers the misleading impression that this is all the particular food has to offer.

The raw truth is, all fresh vegetables and fruit are dense with hundreds of diverse vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other nutrients vital to good health and disease prevention. Each color group presents its own health benefits. These are in addition to those unique to individual vegetables or fruits. Produce color groups are: red, orange and yellow, blue and purple, green, and the white and pale-colored ones. Nature’s pharmacy plays an important role in boosting immunity, controlling blood pressure and cholesterol levels; it helps prevent heart disease, certain kinds of cancer, digestive disorders, and inflammation. It also affects bone, vision health, and more.

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