Eat a Rainbow

A Rainbow of Nutrients

Red

Red fruit and vegetables such as tomatoes contain an antioxidant called lycopene which gives them their red pigment. Lycopene is an important antioxidant that may help protect against heart disease and some cancers. Strawberries and red peppers are also rich sources of vitamin C which is important for skin, wound healing and immune function. 

Orange/ Yellow

Orange fruit and vegetables are high in carotene which is a form of Vitamin A, this keeps our eyes healthy and also contributes to a healthy immune system. Carrots, butternut squash and sweet potato are good sources; that’s why we often hear that carrots help us to see in the dark! Yellow fruit and vegetables like sweetcorn, peach and papaya are also rich in vitamin A. Bananas are rich in potassium, read on to see why potassium is important for our bodies. 

Green

Chlorophyll is a pigment that gives green fruit and vegetables their vibrant colour. Green vegetables contain a range of important chemicals that may protect against blood-vessel damage and certain cancers. Dark green leafy green vegetables such as spinach, kale and broccoli are rich sources of folate, vitamin E and iron. Vitamin E is another important antioxidant which protects our cells from damage.  

Blue/Purple

Anthocyanins are antioxidants that give blue and purple foods their distinctive colour, this antioxidant protects cells against damage and may reduce the risk of various diseases including cardiovascular disease. Foods rich in anthocyanins include blueberries, beetroot, red cabbage and purple grapes. 

White and Beige/Light Brown

White and light brown fruit and vegetables contain important disease-fighting phytochemicals which promote heart health, and strengthen the immune system. These foods are particularly high in fibre, which keeps us fuller for longer and keeps everything moving in our digestive system. Such foods include onions, cauliflower, parsnips, garlic, mushrooms and potatoes.

Fun Fact: Did you know?

How to incorporate the rainbow into your child's diet?

For some recipe inspiration packed full of fruit and vegegtables check out Bord Bia's dedicated recipe page!