This week we had out first children’s nutrition program with coloring worksheets and an obstacle course. The interns ran the program and we were focused on teaching the kids about the function of different colors of fruits and vegetables. The slogan we used (from Farm Fresh Rhode Island’s Healthy Foods Healthy Families Program) is “vary your vegetables and focus your fruits”.
At the market we were able to look at all of the produce to provide examples of each of the different color categories. Below are pictures and functions of the different groups:
White: Keeps your body strong and safe against germs. Even though it lacks color white produce is jam-packed with substances that lower our cholesterol and blood pressure, and increases our body’s abilities to fight infections. In particular the onion family carries some of the best substances to protect good health. Produce in this category has been found to speed up recovery from colds, lowers the risk of having a heat attack, and may stop the spread of stomach and colon cancer.
Red: Keeps your heart strong and your memory sharp. Red and bright pink types of produce contain special chemicals that are thought to reduce the risk of several types of cancers. Additionally, many red fruits and veggies contain antioxidants that help our bodies control high blood pressure and protect against heart diseases.
Green: Helps you go to the bathroom. Doctors recommend that green leafy vegetables are eaten daily. The more green veggies you eat, the healthier you will be because they are packed with nutrients, antioxidants, and substances that protect our bodies against many types of cancer Certain chemicals found in green leafy vegetables maintain good vision in our eyes and reduce the risks of cataracts and macular degeneration
Purple & Blue: Helps you learn and remember. Blue/purple fruits and vegetables keep us feeling young and are thought to slow down the aging process. Many contain phytochemicals and antioxidants that reduce the risk of diseases including cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s.
Yellow & Orange: Keeps your eyes healthy, your skill glowing, and helps you from getting a cold. Bright orange and yellow types of produce reduce the risk of many types of cancer and heart disease. Antioxidants in these colors help our bodies maintain good eyesight and boost our immune systems. Citrus fruits certain chemicals that work together with Vitamin C to reduce the risk of cancer, strengthen bones and teeth, help heal wounds, keep skin healthy, and lower the risk of heart attacks.
So remember to vary your veggies and focus your fruit so that you eat a rainbow of produce. By eating produce in each color group, our bodies benefit from a wide range of healthy chemicals, essential vitamins, and minerals.
Get ready for Bike to Market Week from August 20th – 26th!