Happy 4th of July!
Let’s get patriotic with our food! Yup, we’re talking about red, white, and blue foods today.
Raspberries are one of my favorite foods! They’re one of the lowest sugar fruits (which means they’re low-glycemic), very high in fiber, and also low in calories. Plus, they’re loaded with Vitamin C, antioxidants, and antimicrobial and anticarcinogenic compounds. You get serious bang for your caloric buck here. I recommend buying them organic and frozen because they are cheaper, delicious when they get melty, and don’t get as moldy as quickly as the fresh ones do.
A red food you should really watch out for is the papaya. Most papayas, sadly, are genetically modified (GMO alert!). I love this fruit, which is, like the raspberry, a low-sugar fruit, but now I’m very cautious about eating it. Make sure you know the origins of your papaya before you dive in.
As I’m scaling back on my papaya consumption, I’m turning things up a notch with red beets. This is one red food that I’m just now starting to appreciate. Beets have antioxidant, detoxification, and anti-inflammatory properties. And by increasing your intake of sweet vegetables, like beets, carrots, and sweet potatoes, you decrease your sweet cravings. For some of us, that’s a much-needed trick!
White vegetables get overlooked, in my opinion, because everyone is so busy talking about greens. Well, greens are great, don’t get me wrong, but so are whites!
Here’s what the white veggies can do…
- daikon radishes – detoxification, low in calories, and helps with fat and starch digestion
- onions – antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, increases bone density, and lowers blood cholesterol
- mushrooms – antioxidants and immune-boosting
- cauliflower – good for digestion and detoxification, antioxidants, and anti-inflammatory
Make sure to get lots of colorful fruits and veggies into your meals…and colorless ones, too!!
Okay, this one is a little tricky. Blue foods are actually kind of purple. Purple mountain majesties? Okay, still patriotic. 😉
I think everyone knows by now that blueberries are packed with antioxidants, so all I’m going to say is that they top the dirty dozen list for produce with the most pesticide residue, and you should make sure to buy them, and all other berries, organic when possible. They can be pricey, so it’s a good option to buy them frozen. They last longer and are still packed with nutrients because they’re frozen right after they’re picked. It’s a win-win.
Anthocyanin, the pigment in blue/purple foods like blueberries, eggplants, figs, blackberries, plums, and grapes, gives us antioxidants, anti-aging properties, and benefits eye and heart health.
So, the bottom line is that the more colors you have on your plate, the better. By getting different types of foods into your diet, you’re getting a variety of vitamins, nutrients, and health benefits. So let’s get healthy and patriotic, people!
Have a safe and happy holiday!
Question of the Day:
What’s the best place you’ve ever watched fireworks?