Written by Tatiana Vicol
So, what’s the deal with the Phytonutrients? These are compounds found in plants, nutrients that protect the plant from UV radiation. Pretty smart, right? Multiple studies have shown that just as in plants, these smart chemicals have the ability to combat free radicals in the human body. A free radical is a molecule missing an electron. When these molecules are cruising around your DNA or other cell membranes they steal electrons from them through a process called oxidation. Aging, cancer, cell mutation, immune function damage, heart disease, and much more are all influenced by your body’s ability or antioxidant availability to combat these nasty cruisers.
Things you should know:
Go Red and Pink: Research shows that lycopene slows down aging and protects your skin from the damaging effects of sun. Fruits like strawberries and cherries are packed with anthocynins and flavonoids that may help with lowering bad cholesterol and blood pressure.
Turn Blue & Purple: Anthocyanins help to lower LDL (bad) cholesterol and protect your cells. Fruits and vegetables like plums, prunes, blackberries, blueberries, and eggplants are all a great source of this antioxidant.
Put on your Orange & Yellow: Beta-carotene takes care of your eyes and may protect from some forms of cancer. This antioxidant is rich in carrots, pumpkin, winter squash, sweet potatoes, and peaches.
Stay in the Green: Antioxidants such as Vitamin C & E, quercetin & sulforaphane are all present in broccoli, spinach kale and all other green leafy vegetables which combat free radicals and help protect cells from further damage. Have them any time of the day, preferably raw.
For the Salad:
- 1-2 cups Spinach, Kale, or Arugula
- ½ Yellow Pepper
- ½ Red Pepper
- ½ Apple
- 1 Medium Cucumber
- 1TBS Pumpkin Seeds
For the Dressing:
- 1 TBS Tahini (sesame seed paste)
- Pinch of Cayenne Pepper
- Pinch of Sea Salt
Mix salad ingredients together in a bowl. In a separate bowl mix the dressing ingredients. Drizzle over your salad and voila….
Holistic Nutritionist Student Practitioner