At the salon you’re concerned with cut and color—now take that concept to your meal planning! As National Nutrition Month wraps up, sponsored by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, take a look at the mix of colors on your plate. Cut up a rainbow of foods to make sure you’re getting a little of everything you need.

Cut and Color? Apply to Food!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RED

Foods: tomatoes, watermelon, strawberries, cranberries, red peppers, apples, cherries, rhubarb, radishes.

Benefits: Cranberries are known to relieve urinary tract infections, while other reds are considered good for heart health and stroke prevention. Tomatoes and bell peppers of all colors contain a host of healthful carotenoids.

 

YELLOW/ORANGE

Foods: lemons, pineapple, grapefruit, mangoes, apricots, squash, sweet potatoes, cantaloupe, peaches, nectarines, oranges, carrots.

Benefits: The caretenoids that color these foods aid your vision, immune system, digestion and urinary tract and may help to prevent heart disease and some cancers.

 

GREEN 

Foods: lettuces, asparagus, broccoli, spinach, cucumbers, avocados, celery, cabbage, brussels sprouts, green beans, peas, kale, spring onions, leeks, kiwi. 

Benefits: Studies show that greens can help to prevent cancer, cataracts, ulcers and heart disease.

 

BLUE/PURPLE/DEEP RED

Foods: grapes, plums, blueberries, blackberries, eggplant, beets, currants, plums, figs, prunes, raisins, red cabbage.

Benefits: The anthocyanins in purple and dark red foods can guard against urinary tract infections; vision and memory also benefit. Pomegranates, grape seed extract and blueberries are among “superfoods” identified by City of Hope for their properties that may help to prevent the growth of breast cancer.

 

White/Tan/Brown

Foods: mushrooms, bananas, garlic, parsnips, turnips, shallots, nuts, ginger, cinnamon. These are the good whites, but there are some not-so-good whites! Watch your portions of potatoes and dairy, and limit or cut out white bread and white pasta.

Benefits: Nuts have been shown to reduce rates of both cancer and heart disease; for the most protein with the fewest calories, choose almonds, cashews and pistachios. And two in this category—mushrooms and cinnamon—rank with City of Hope’s “superfoods.” White button mushrooms may block hormones crucial to the growth of prostate cancer, while cinnamon extract interferes with a cancer tumor’s ability to grow.