For years, I’ve been advising my patients to eat a Rainbow Diet, that is, a diet based on a wide variety of fruits and vegetables of all colours. Why? Because the natural colour in plant foods is provided by chemical compounds known as Phytochemicals, and these compounds have been found to provided enormous health benefits.
Phytonutrients protect your body’s cells, keep you youthful, cleanse your insides of toxins, strengthen your organs, and prevent and fight major diseases such as cancer, autoimmune diseases and cardiac disease. In addition to that, when you eat more phytonutrients, your body is getting more of the nutrients it needs to function at its peak and give you loads of energy.
Yet most of us just don’t eat enough of the foods that are rich in phytonutrients. Some of us stick to the same familiar foods – apples, carrots, perhaps a few greens now and then. Some people hardly even do that, or if they do eat plant foods, they’re so processed and overcooked that the food’s just plain dead.
If that’s you, then you’re missing out on some powerful protection. Here are just a few of the valuable phytonutrients you could be getting from Nature’s rainbow larder:
Chlorophyll – essential for all plant life, this compound is a powerful detoxifier, cell rejuvenator and energizer. It also protects genes from damage that leads to cancers. Found in wheat grass, spirulina, barley grass and leafy greens.
Ellagic acid – In a 9 year study, the Hollings Cancer Institute at the University of South Carolina found that this Ellagic acid is inhibited cancer cell division with 48 hours, and normal cell death within 72 hours for breast, pancreas, oesophageal, skin, colon and prostate cancer cells. This cancer-preventing compound is found in pomegranates, grapes, raspberries, and strawberries. Glutathione – a powerful immune regenerator that is essential for liver health and maintaining your DNA found in red foods like watermelon and green foods like asparagus
Lycopene – this cancer-fighting compound that also benefits the heart is found in tomatoes, guava, papaya, pink grapefruit, watermelon and rosehips
Quercetin – an anti-inflammatory antioxidant that has been used to treat cancer, prostatitis, heart disease, cataracts, and respiratory diseases like bronchitis and asthma. A study in the British Journal of Cancer reported that skin and prostate cancers treated with quercetin and resulted in 90% death of the cancer cells within 48 hours. Quercetin is found in many foods, including apples, citrus, onions, grapes, broccoli, leafy green vegetables, cherries, cranberries and turmeric
Resveratrol – this compound helps prevent cancer and inhibits the progression of existing cancers, and also reduces the risk of age-related diseases. Research at the Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine and Ohio State University found that resveratrol can also help to inhibit cardiac disease. Find high levels of resveratrol in the skin of purple/red grapes (especially Muscatel grapes), blueberries, raspberries, mulberries, bilberries, and cranberries.
As you can see, a colourful, varied diet is not a luxury. It’s vital to your and your family’s health and wellbeing. And to ensure you’re getting the very best protection from disease without toxic pesticides and additives, eat what’s in season and grown as close to home as you can find…if possible, organic.