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Most people who follow healthy eating patterns are used to eating the same things every day, basically putting themselves in a rut rather than a pattern. This tends to happen when we find foods that both fit into our lifestyles and are working for our bodies. Obviously, we all like to see the lowest number possible when we step on the scale, so if that means eating like a bird all day, every day, we’re successful, right? Maybe, but why not keep your healthy eating habits, your low number on the scale while getting the amazing feeling that results from a healthy heart while coloring your plate with more variety?
Its true, the more color on your plate the better. Vegetables and fruits are packed with the essential nutrients we need on a daily basis, so filling your plate with colorful choices within your calorie count will help you get the most out of your diet. Shoot for having at least a red, green, orange and purple or blue fruit or vegetable within a day to ensure the intake of good sources of vitamins and minerals. Here are some colorful examples of food to add to your plate:
Red: Watermelon and tomatoes. They are both good sources of lycopene which has been known to reduce some cancers, like prostate, and support good bone health.
Orange: Carrots, pumpkin, cantaloupe, sweet potatoes and orange peppers. Carrots are excellent for the eyes and are loaded with beta-carotene. Carotenoids are essential for skin and lung health and have anti-inflammatory benefits.
Green: Broccoli, kale and cabbage. All of them are packed with carotenoids (cancer fighting foods). Dark green veggies and fruits support bone and eye health. Steam them, or eat them raw, either way they contain fiber, folic acid and are high in calcium.
Purple or Blue: Darker colors indicate higher antioxidant levels. Eat plums, blueberries and eggplant. All of these foods contain antioxidants that fight against free radicals which contribute to the aging process, heart disease and cancer. You can mix some blueberries and plums in some yogurt or your favorite ice cream too!
Don’t get stuck in the healthy rut of filling your plate with the same old boring stuff - color your plate for better health and energy. Add some color to add to your long term health! You’ll feel great and look great too.