Celebrate fruit and vegies in all the colours of the rainbow – when it comes to nutrients, each is a little pot of gold. Right now the fresh produce aisles at Coles are bursting with delicious, great-value fruit and vegies, so make the most of them, says our Nutrition and Wellbeing Manager Vanessa Hattersley. “The beneficial nutrients in fruit and vegetables also give them their colour, so enjoy a rainbow of produce in your diet for optimum nutrition.”
A 150g serve of juicy red tomatoes provides more than two thirds of the recommended daily intake of vitamin C.
Try this: For a tasty low-fat canapé, scoop the seeds from cherry tomatoes and fill with herbed ricotta.
Eat these too: Watermelon, strawberries and red capsicum.
These tangy tropical favourites have more beta-carotene than any other fruit. Each serve – 150g or 3/4 cup diced mango – is an excellent source of vitamin C and a source of fibre.
Try this: For a barbecue-friendly dessert, brush scored mango cheeks with a little honey and lime juice and chargrill until caramelised.
Eat these too: Carrots, pumpkin and sweet potatoes.
A source of potassium, bananas are a healthy low-to-medium GI snack food to boost energy on the go.
Try this: Add some mashed banana to a basic pancake batter to provide sweetness without added sugar.
Eat these too: Yellow squash, pineapples and sweet corn – steam, barbecue or microwave the corn cobs to maximise the nutrients.
Green definitely means go in healthy eating terms, and darker green lettuce leaves have higher nutrient levels. A cup (75g) of baby spinach is low in kilojoules and a good source of vitamin C and folate.
Try this: Make a green smoothie – blend baby spinach with a little water and chopped fruit such as apple, pear, banana or kiwifruit.
Eat these too: Granny smith apples, avocados, asparagus and green capsicum.
The colour in blue and purple foods comes from antioxidants called anthocyanins. Each serve – a cup of blueberries or 150g – is a source of fibre and provides almost half the recommended daily intake of vitamin C.
Try this: Throw a handful of blueberries into rice, couscous, pasta or quinoa salads to add a burst of sweetness.
Eat these too: Red or blue-skinned potato varieties and purple foods such as beetroot, eggplant and red onion.