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TEXARKANA, Ark. –
We’ve always been told that we eat with our eyes, meaning that if a food is attractive
we may be more willing to try it versus something that doesn’t look at appetizing.
Fruits and vegetables definitely add texture and color to our plates. You can enjoy
a rainbow of colors, greens, reds, oranges, whites and even purples, in varieties
of fruits and vegetables.
Fruits and vegetables have natural substances that give fruits and vegetables their
vibrant colors, called phytochemicals. Certain phytochemicals may help protect against
some cancers, heart disease, and other chronic health conditions.
Eating a variety of fruits and vegetables from each color group will help get these
rich phytochemicals and other vitamins and minerals in our diet. Variety in the types
of fruits and vegetables that we eat, as well as the color spectrum will yield the
best health benefits.
Vibrant blue/purple fruits and vegetables can help maintain your urinary tract health;
lower the risk of some cancers; improve memory function; and promote healthy aging.
You can find them in such vegetables as purple cabbage; eggplant; purple Belgian endive;
purple peppers; blackberries; blueberries; purple grapes; plums and raisins.
Eating green vegetables is said to provide such health benefits as a lower risk of
some cancers; improved vision health; and strong bones and teeth. Consider adding
these fruits and vegetables to your plate: artichokes; arugula; asparagus; broccoli;
Brussels sprouts; zucchini; cucumbers; okra; peppers; avocados; green apples; kiwifruit;
limes; green pears and green apples.
White, tan and brown fruits and vegetables are also of interest to researchers and
scientists due to their belief that they help to improve your heart health; maintain
cholesterol levels that are already healthy; and lower the risk of some cancers.
Get all the health benefits of white by including foods such as bananas; dates; white
peaches; cauliflower; mushrooms; turnips; white corn; onions; kohlrabi and garlic
in your diet.
Yellow and orange colored fruits and vegetables are known to contain vitamin C, the
vitamin essential in fighting off infections and colds, as well as helping keep your
gums healthy. Choose from apricots; cantaloupe, grapefruit; oranges, mangoes; papayas;
lemon; butternut squash; spaghetti squash; carrots; yellow peppers; pumpkin; sweet
corn; and sweet potatoes.
The last color of our rainbow is red. Red fruits and vegetables are thought to promote
better health through lycopene, a relative of beta-carotene. It is thought that lycopene
may help reduce the risk of some cancers, including prostrate. It is also thought
to help you have a healthy heart; and help memory function and urinary tract health.
Include red fruits and vegetables in your diet through red apples; cherries; cranberries;
pomegranates; strawberries; watermelon; beets; red peppers; radishes; red onions;
red potatoes; rhubarb; and tomatoes.
By making sure that your diet is as colorful as a box of crayons, you will be taking
advantage of all the vitamins and minerals that fruits and vegetables have to offer.
For more information on storing fruits and vegetables and making half you plate fruits
and vegetables, contact the University of Arkansas Division of AG, Cooperative Extension
Service, in Miller County at 870 779-3609, e-mail email@example.com. Follow me on facebook and twitter at @MillerCountyFCS for additional recipes and
This Greek Salad is a rainbow of colors and textures and so easy to make. It pairs
perfectly with kebobs from the grill. It is best made up to 2 hours ahead for best
flavor. It will make about 4 and one half cups.
By Carla Haley-Hadley County Extension Agent - FCSThe Cooperative Extension ServiceU of A System Division of Agriculture
Media Contact: Carla Haley-Hadley County Extension Agent - FCSU of A Division of AgricultureCooperative Extension Service400 Laurel Street, Suite 215 Texarkana AR 71854 (870) 779-3609 firstname.lastname@example.org
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action institution. If you require a reasonable accommodation to participate or need
materials in another format, please contact your County Extension office (or other
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regardless of race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin,
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