Friday, January 30, 2015

Eat the Rainbow and Chug the Ocean



Eat Colorfully and Stay Hydrated

When photographers or artists portray food... they don't portray "beige chips, artificially dyed drinks and dull boxed foods." Artists gravitate towards nature's beauty.... "red apples, orange pumpkins and purple eggplants."  The naturally appealing colors draw in the eye, and should also draw in your eye when on your plate. 

Foods full of color also tend to be those full of nutrients! When considering nutrition, the more colorful the food (natural of course) the better they are for you. Brown rice vs white, iceberg lettuce vs spinach... color wins!  Dive in to the produce section of your grocery store and taste the rainbow. 



-What makes foods so colorful? Phytochemicals provide fruits and vegetables with their color, taste and smell.  Phytochemicals also stimulate your body's Immune system and help prevent damage to your DNA, thus helping you stay healthy.  These phytochemicals also act as antioxidants that protect your body from oxidative damages we encounter through the day.

What do the colors mean:
  •  White- allyl sulphides, helps with arterial, circulation and heart health
  • Green- sulforaphanes, inodoles, zeaxanthin, helps with eye, lung, liver function and wound healing
  • Yellow/orange- cryptoxanthin, flavinoids, helps with immune health
  • Orange- alpha and beta carotenes, helps with eye and immune health
  • Red/Purple- anthocyanins, polyphenols, helps with heart and brain health
  • Red- lycopene, helps with heart health and DNA protection


Along with eating fresh and colorful foods, chug the ocean! Not literally, but staying hydrated goes hand in hand with staying healthy.  Your body is 60% water and vital in staying healthy. Water is necessary for washing out toxins from your body, help your kidneys and liver function as well as carry nutrients and aid in digestion. Dehydration can mask itself as hunger, so enjoying a glass of water before a meal or snack can help decrease overeating. Being dehydrated is not only unhealthy, but makes you feel tired... who has time for that? 

How much water should one drink in a day?  Many people would recommend drinking eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day. This is a very good goal to have, but that is only 1.9 liters, most studies state that men should drink 3 liters a day and women 2.2 liters a day. Another general rule is to drink enough water to prevent you from feeling thirsty (remember it can feel like hunger) and to have your urine be clear. These guidelines include all fluids not just water, but I doubt they intended it to include soda or alcohol! More water should be drank if you exercise, live in warm climates, have a fever, vomiting or diarrhea. 



Spice up water to ensure intake! I'm not talking about cayenne (but it could be a nice kick to lemon water).  Drinking enough water through the day does not have to be boring. Add fruit, mint, cucumbers to it. Enjoy coconut water which is full of electrolytes or a sparkling water.  My favorite is La Croix, it is all natural and comes in many great flavors.


XO

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