Sunday, March 17, 2013

National Nutrition Month

When you think of nutrition, what crosses your mind?  portion sizes? calorie control? fruits and veggies? 
To me, nutrition encompasses a spectrum of color and variety which makes eating healthy fun.  March is known as National Nutrition Month, which was initiated in 1973 as a week-long event, "National Nutrition Week."  To me, we should always celebrate nutrition and the new successes that we achieve.  Maybe it could be trying a new super food, experimenting with avocado or learning how to cook with seafood.  If you are trying new foods with color, that is a great way to start on your path to long-term healthy eating. 

Let me go over all the colors and how this can transcend into your daily life...
Color can essentially be your guide to nutritious meals... Green, yellow, orange, purple, blue, red, white - the list goes on!  An easy way to start is to fill half your plate with fruits and vegetables, switching up the color as often as you can.

 Green - kiwi, broccoli, spinach and kale - these green foods contain powerful antioxidants which may help promote healthy vision and reduce cancer risk.

Orange and yellow - oranges, apricots, cantaloupe, carrots, corn, winter squash - these foods are rich in beta-carotene, vitamin C and lutein which promote healthy skin, vision and strengthening of immune system.

Purple and blue - blueberries, blackberries, prunes, plums, eggplant and purple cabbage - these foods are known as potent anti-agers!  They may also help assist with cognitive functioning, urinary tract health and reduced cancer risks.

Red - tomatoes, watermelon, ruby red grapefruit, cranberries, pomegranates, beets - these foods are loaded with lycopene, which may help lower prostate and ovarian cancers in addition to help maintain a healthy heart, vision and immunity.

White - potatoes, cauliflower, mushrooms, onions - these foods contain nutrients that may promote heart health and reduce cancer risks.

With all of these choices and the health promoting nutrients, eating a wide variety will serve as a strong foundation and cover all your nutrient needs.  Eat the rainbow for better protection :-)

Writing this post makes me think of what my dinner will be tonight. Here is a colorful dinner that will satisfy not only my palate, but my inner body!

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