One of the benefits of following a Paleo Diet is that you get to eat all of the fruits and vegetables you want. I know that when I first started to eat Paleo, I quickly learned that if I was going to maintain this way of eating, I had to explore the wide world of produce. It didn’t take me long to see that the colour of my dinner plate was changing. Instead of being loaded with white food like potatoes and the pale yellow of corn, my meals were full of vibrant colours. It wasn’t until later that I learned how beneficial colourful foods are to people.
We all know that antioxidants help keep us young and healthy, but did you know how to easily add them to your diet? The simple answer is to fill your plate with colour. Plant foods, especially colourful ones, are a primary source of antioxidants. Many plant antioxidants are stored in the leaves, while others appear in plant pigments such as the anthocyanins that make the blue-purple colours of blackberries and blueberries.
So how do antioxidants keep us young and healthy? In his book In Defense of Food, Michael Pollan explains that during the body’s natural processes such as cell metabolism, atoms of oxygen (oxygen radicals) attract other particles and become free radicals. Free radicals have been implicated in many health problems including cancer, and the problems associated with aging. Antioxidants harmlessly absorb these radicals before they can cause damage.
If you don’t consider yourself much of a fruit and vegetable eater, don’t worry. You can add antioxidants to your meal with these few tips:
· Add blueberries, sliced strawberries, raspberries or dried cherries to your morning bowl of cereal or oatmeal.
· Slice an avocado in half and add a splash of lime and a sprinkle of salt and it eat out of the rind. It tastes like instant guacamole.
· Add shaved carrots and cucumber slices to your sandwich at lunch.
· Replace the pale iceberg lettuce in your salads with dark green arugula, spinach or kale.
· Add slices of fresh fruit to your salad.
· Add dried fruit to your salad.
· Add chopped tomatoes and other vegetables to your scrambled eggs.
· Change up your white potato with a sweet potato.
We all know that we have to eat our fruits and vegetables. Our mothers have told us that since we were born. Unfortunately, most people don’t eat enough of either. Considering our society’s youth obsession, maybe we should spend less money on the newest anti-aging fad, and just eat colourful food.