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Eat The Colors of the Rainbow

When we say, “eat the colors of the rainbow” we do mean this

  1 and NOT               2

Phytonutrients: This term refers to the several thousands of different, healthful, non-nutritive compounds (meaning they don’t supply calories like carbs, fat, and protein) in plants. Phytonutrients do, however, have the ability to change the structure and function of some cells. Some studies suggest that in the human body phytonutrients stimulate enzymes that help the body get rid of toxins, boost the immune system, improve cardiovascular health, promote estrogen metabolism, and stimulate the death of cancer cells. Studies have also shown that people who eat more plant based foods have reduced risk of chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.

Here at Healthy Living Dallas we encourage our patients to not only eat approximately 9-13 servings of plant based foods everyday, but we also encourage them to eat a rainbow of colors everyday! A typical serving is only half a cup of cooked vegetables, one cup of raw leafy vegetable, or a medium-sized piece of fruit. Aim for ~3 servings of plant based foods at each meal and you will hit your goal. An easy way to do this is by making half your lunch and dinner plate vegetables. Sources of phytonutrients include: fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, herbs, spices, nuts and seeds, and teas. Below is a sample menu on how to reach that 9-13 serving goal.

 

Breakfast: 2 egg omelet with ½ cup chopped vegetables (mushrooms, onions, bell pepper) and ½ cup fresh spinach with ¾ cup mixed blueberries and blackberries. 1/8 whole avocado as topping. 

3.5 servings plant based foods

Lunch: 4 ounces grilled chicken breast, ½ medium yam, 1 cup green beans. Drizzle 1 teaspoon olive oil and 1 teaspoon balsamic.

3 servings plant based foods

Dinner: 4 ounces grilled salmon (dill) with lemon garnish, 1 cup roasted vegetables (peppers, onions, squash, asparagus, and/or broccoli), 1/3 cup brown rice. 

3 servings plant based foods

Snacks during the day:

1 red delicious apple with 12 almonds

¼ cup hummus with ½ cup cucumber slices and celery mix for dipping. 

4 servings plant based foods

Total:

13.5 servings of plant based foods

 RED

Benefits: Anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, cell protection, DNA health, immune health, prostate health, vascular health.

ORANGE

Benefits: Anti-bacterial, anti-cancer, cell protection, immune health, reduced mortality, reproductive health, skin health.

YELLOW

Benefits: Anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, cell protection, cognition, eye health, heart health, skin health, vascular health.

GREEN

Benefits: Anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, brain health, cell protection, skin health, hormone balance, heart health, liver health.

BLUE/PURPLE/BLACK

Benefits: Anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, cell protection, cognitive health, heart health.

WHITE/TAN/BROWN

Benefits: Anti-cancer, anti-microbial, cell protection, gastrointestinal health, heart health, hormone balance, liver health.

Here are some tips to getting in more colorful fruits and vegetables in your diet….

  1. Include watermelon slices, raspberries, cherries, strawberries and apple slices in your snacks.
  2. Prepare salsa using chopped tomatoes, chopped red onions, and chili peppers.
  3. Puree carrots, butternut squash, and/or pumpkin and use as a soup base.
  4. Have a sweet potato instead of a baked potato.
  5. Grate ginger into a stir-fry of Asian vegetables like snap peas, cabbage, and carrots.
  6. Have pineapple slices as a dessert.
  7. Have a cup of green tea instead of coffee.
  8. Toss some greens into your morning smoothie. You can all add in some grated ginger or cinnamon!
  9. Have diced asparagus and spinach in your morning omelet.
  10. Have berries in a smoothie.
  11. Substitute purple or black rice for white rice.
  12. Dip vegetables into hummus (ground chickpea dip) or bean dip.
  13. Have unsweetened applesauce instead of pudding for dessert. Try this with a dash of fresh cinnamon.

Fun Facts! Did you know…..

The antioxidant content increases in the following foods when they are cooked: carrots, spinach, mushrooms, asparagus, broccoli, cabbage, red cabbage, green and red peppers, potatoes, and tomatoes. 

Peeling away skins of apples and cucumbers reduces their antioxidant content significantly.

 food be thy medicine

 

Office locations
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  • Dallas

    3800 San Jacinto
    Dallas, TX 75204
    (214) 736-7405
    Driving Directions

    Hours:
    Monday, Wednesday,
    Friday: 8:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
    Tuesday: 4:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.

  • Grapevine

    823 Ira E. Woods Avenue
    Grapevine, TX 76051
    (214) 736-7405
    Driving Directions

    Hours:
    Thursday: 1:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.