The colors of the rainbow are pleasing to the eye and, when seen on fruits and vegetables, serve to make them more appealing to the appetite as well. In addition to the promise of gastronomic delight, the bright colors of many foods portend the wealth of nutrition that resides within. Each color, in fact, corresponds to nutrients that have specific health benefits when consumed. Yellow foods express the abundant presence of these nutrients: Vitamins A & C, alpha and beta carotene, beta cryptoxanthin, lutein and zeaxanthin, as well as magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and B vitamins.
The yellow foods that contain these nutrients are mostly fruits and vegetables but also include some nuts and whole grains. A partial list of the most common yellow foods would be:
- Yellow peppers
- Summer squash
- Yellow wax beans
- Citrus fruits
- Sweet corn
When consumed, these yellow foods provide nutrients that, in addition to contributing to general well-being, also provide these very specific health benefits:
- Cardiovascular Health – Magnesium helps prevent heart attacks and stroke and, in combination with potassium, promotes healthy blood pressure. Vitamin C and the carotenoids inhibit cholesterol oxidation which slows or prevents atherosclerosis. Folate is necessary to help the system remove homocysteine, an amino acid that contributes to atherosclerosis and blood clotting.
- Pulmonary Health – Beta cryptoxanthin is a carotenoid. It is found in mangoes, nectarines, peaches, citrus fruits and yellow peppers. In addition to its antioxidant capacity it supports a healthy protective lining of the lungs. The lining is a barrier to infection and irritation. Beta cryptoxanthin is thought to help prevent lung cancer.
- Eyesight – Yellow foods are an abundant source of beta carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin. These potent antioxidants have been shown to prevent or slow diseases of aging that affect the eyes, including cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.
- Cancer Prevention – Antioxidants suppress or prevent damage to cells and their internal structures caused by free radicals in the blood. Free radicals occur when any toxin or pollutant enters the body. Instead of attacking healthy cells, free radicals attack antioxidants instead. After burning themselves out, the remnants of the free radicals are then safely removed and the cells have been protected from the damage that can lead to mutation and cancer. Vitamins A and C, the carotenoids, lutein and zeaxanthin are all potent antioxidants that yellow foods bring to the fight against cancer.
- Youthful Complexion – Just as antioxidants help fight cancer, they protect the skin cells from the free radical damage of ultraviolet radiation from the sun, environmental exposure and chemical toxins. In addition, Vitamin C is essential for the formation of collagen, which is the primary supportive tissue of the skin.
Getting all of the yellow you need each day from your rainbow of nutrition can often be challenging. Support your dietary levels of these important foods by using a well-designed antioxidant complex. Clinical Antioxidant is the perfect addition to your daily regime to ensure that you are getting all of the yellow nutrition you need each day.