"Health benefits of Green Foods" and images of spinach, cabbage, Swiss chard, Brussels sprouts and broccoli

Function of Phytonutrients in Plants

  • Colored pigments in plants are produced to protect them from pathogens, predators, and climate conditions.
  • They attract pollinators
  • Contribute to the plants’ sensory characteristics, color, and nutritional value.
  • The chlorophyll (green pigment) in plants absorbs light so plants can make energy (food).
Health benefits of anthoxanthin-rich foods with images of potatoes, onions, garlic, ginger, mushrooms and banana

In my opinion, white vegetables don’t get enough time in the spotlight. Unlike the red, orange, and green groups, their white counterparts are often overlooked for not being as “healthful”. Hopefully, this post will change some minds and be a reminder that ALL fruit and vegetable color subgroups are beneficial in different ways. It’s important to eat a rainbow of colors from the plant kingdom to reap the benefits of each colorful subgroup. Phytochemicals (plant chemicals) contribute to the unique smell, taste, and color of our favorite fruits and vegetables.

health benefits of carotenoid rich foods with images of an orange, cantaloupe, sweet potato, eggs, corn and banana.

Where Carotenoids are Found

  • Naturally occurring plant pigments. More than 650 types exist in nature.
Health benefits of anthocyanin-rich foods with a red, blue, and purple background.

Eat Red, Blue, and Purple Foods for Better Health

The function of Anthocyanins in Plants

  • Colored pigments in plants are produced to protect them from pathogens, predators, and climate conditions.
  • They attract pollinators and act as antifeedants (adversely affects insects when eaten) and phytoalexins (inhibit the growth of parasites).
  • Contribute to the plants’ sensory characteristics, color, and nutritional value.
  • Natural colorants used in the f
healthy shift ideas like using olive oil instead of butter, eating quinoa instead of white rice and choosing sugar-free beverages over soda and juice.

Happy National Nutrition Month®! This is a great time of year to reevaluate your eating pattern to determine if it’s working for you. Are you getting the healthful foods you need to live your best life?

An eating pattern represents all of the food and drink choices you make from day to day over the course of your lifetime. It’s more important to focus on healthy shifts you can make to your eating pattern than on individual foods. Be careful of fad diets that eliminate entire food groups (more to come on this on future posts!).

fiber foods

We know that small changes in the way we eat can have positive health impacts down the road.

photos of person eating Mediterranean salad next to photo of Mediterranean food ingredients

Instead of saying 'diet', I like to use the term 'eating pattern' which refers to the quantities, proportions, variety, or combinations of different foods and beverages that are habitually consumed over a long period of time. Dietary patterns can help predict health later in life.

September is Healthy Aging Month which is something we can all acknowledge since we’re all aging. I like to call it “gaining momentum”. We all gather momentum as we age through the build-up of experiences and insights. Embrace this dynamic process that leads to new abilities and knowledge that can be shared with one another.

There is not one right way to age well or a certain path that must be taken. Find what works for you and maintain a positive outlook along the way.   

Sweet and Savory Oats

Oats can be found in many cultural dishes such as Scotland's haggis and Muesli from the Swiss. Oats have been a popular addition to many recipes and a staple food source for centuries (printable recipes below).

Oats are an extremely versatile whole grain and can be added to many recipes from breakfast to beverages. Here are some of my favorite applications for oats: