Eating the Rainbow : Part 2 .... ORANGE and YELLOW
Orange and Yellow
Nutrition and Benefits
Each color of fruits and vegetables has its own special function and provide individual benefits to us. Emphases of orange and yellow fruits and vegetables concentrate on protecting vision, boosting the immune system and fighting free radicals.
The pigments that color yellow and orange fruits and vegetables are generally carotenoids, which improve immune function, and lower risk of heart disease, cancer and vision problems -macular degeneration. Other benefits of orange and yellow fruits and vegetables are reducing risk of prostate cancer, lowering LDL cholesterol and blood pressure, increasing healthy joints and fighting free radicals.
Your body converts many of its carotenoids to vitamin A; thus, the connection of carrots to vision. In addition to being good for vision, yellow and orange fruits and vegetables are also good for the immune system and for cellular communication because they are high in beta-carotene. Items high in beta-carotene are sweet potatoes, pumpkins and carrots. Orange and yellow also provide vitamin C and some potassium. And yellow usually contains lutein and zeaxanthin which fight free radicals.
Quick List of Common Orange/Yellow Fruits and Vegetables
apricots, butternut squash, cantaloupe, cape gooseberries, carrots, golden kiwifruit, grapefruit, lemon, mangoes, nectarines, oranges, papayas, peaches, persimmons, pineapples, pumpkin, rutabagas, yellow apples, yellow beets, yellow figs, yellow pears, yellow peppers, yellow potatoes, yellow summer squash, yellow tomatoes, yellow watermelon, yellow winter squash
Tips and Facts about some of the Orange/Yellow Fruits and Vegetables
- Apricots - these are packed with vitamin A, so they are good for your vision, skin, and blood. And, they are rich in fiber which makes them helpful to digestion and weight loss.
- Butternut squash - Because butternut squash is high in antioxidants it is as a base for many vegan soups.
- Cantaloupe - Cantaloupe contains lots of vitamins A and C as well as B vitamins, potassium, vitamin K, magnesium and fiber. Beyond the common functions of these vitamins, one of the functions of cantaloupe is to keep hair healthy and produce new skin.... keeping us young.
- Carrots - Carrots are well known for protecting our vision. This is because it is high in beta-carotene. Carrots also decrease the incidence of heart disease and stroke and help protect against cancer.
- Golden kiwi - This one will surprise you. Did you know that golden kiwi contains more vitamin C than oranges? They are also high in fiber, potassium and antioxidants, so they help protect against cancer.
- Grapefruit - Grapefruit provides health benefits to your skin, decreases blood pressure and helps prevent diseases. It contains flavonoids which lower the rate of strokes, and it's a rich source of antioxidants - protecting against cancer.
- Lemons and oranges - these fruits are excellent as a source of vitamin C and antioxidants. Therefore, they protect us from cancer and from colds and flu.
- Mango - This is another great source of antioxidants and provide protection against colon cancer, breast cancer, leukemia and prostate cancer. It also has benefits for skin and may help diabetes.
- Nectarines and peaches - These contain beta-carotene with all its benefits for vising and skin. They are also high in vitamin C another important antioxidant protecting against free radicals.
- Papaya - Papaya is also rich in vitamin C, fiber and antioxidants. It lowers cholesterol, boosts the immune system and protects against arthritis.
- Pineapple - This one is a surprise to me. Pineapple helps protect against macular degeneration, is good for bone strength, and is rich in antioxidants.
- Pumpkin - Because pumpkin is high in fiber, it helps fill you up. It contains vitamin A and helps lower blood pressure and keeps your heart healthy.
- Sweet potatoes - The sweet potato is another excellent source of vitamin A, B6, vitamin C, Vitamin D, potassium and iron. These provide protection against cancer and help support the immune system.
- Yellow beets - These guys are as packed with nutrition as their red relatives. They contain fiber, iron, potassium, vitamin C, vitamin A, lycopene, flavonoids, and zeaxanthins.
- Yellow peppers - The vitamin C, antioxidants, and sulfur in peppers help protect you against cancer.
- Yellow winter squash - This offers vitamin B2 and B3, vitamin K, potassium, and antioxidants. It boosts the immune system, reduces blood pressure and fights cancer.
So, enjoy some orange and yellow vegetables today. Your body will thank you for it.
To see the other posts in this series...
be kind - be the change
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