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Health Benefits Of Eating Purple Coloured Fruits & Vegetables

Doctors usually advise to consume plenty of colourful fruits and vegetables because they are high in antioxidants, a compound that plays a major role in protecting our bodies from free radicals. Colourful foods not only provide a host of health benefits but also they add another beautiful addition to our plates.

Purple coloured fruits and vegetables are the hottest new food trend this year and you should start incorporating it into your diet. Purple foods keep your heart healthy, kill cancer cells, to name a few and most importantly they contain antioxidants called anthocyanins, a plant pigment that gives fruits and vegetables their deep red, purple or blue colour [1] .

Purple coloured foods contain indoles which are nutrients derived from sulphur compounds that may slow down the metabolism of carcinogens. Carcinogens are known to increase the risk of cancer.

List Of Purple Fruits To Include In Your Diet

1. Purple grapes

2. Figs

3. Passion fruits

4. Raisins

5. Plums and dried plums

6. Blackberries

7. Blueberries

8. Elderberries

9. Cranberries

10. Bilberries

11. Chokeberries

List Of Purple Vegetables To Include In Your Diet

1. Purple carrots

2. Purple cabbages

3. Purple asparagus

4. Purple sweet potatoes

5. Purple olives

6. Purple peppers

7. Purple brinjals

8. Purple cauliflowers

9. Purple onions

10. Purple broccoli

11. Purple artichokes

12. Purple radishes

List Of Purple Grains To Include In Your Diet

1. Purple corn

2. Purple rice

3. Purple wheat

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1. Fight Against Ulcers

A study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry found that the anthocyanins present in blackberries lower the formation of stomach ulcers. Researchers believe that these anthocyanins prevent oxidation and boost the activity of other important antioxidants, such as glutathione which is naturally present in the body [2].

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2. Promote healthy heart

Certain purple coloured fruits like blackcurrants and bilberries have the ability to lower LDL (bad) cholesterol and increase HDL (good) cholesterol. Increased levels of LDL cholesterol leads to the formation of plaques in the arterial walls. This blocks the natural flow of blood to your heart and the entire body, thereby leaving you at a severe risk of heart attack and stroke [2].

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3. Inhibit cancer cells

Many studies have shown that resveratrol present in purple foods can induce cancer cell death in blood cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer, skin cancer, liver and lung cancer. Purple sweet potato has the potent ability to protect against colon cancer [3].

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4. Increase memory

Purple sweet potatoes are known to have memory-enhancing effects due to the anthocyanins present in it. It aids in preventing age-related decline of the nervous system while promoting learning and memory [4].

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5. Prevent urinary tract infections

Vegetables such as purple cauliflower, purple carrots and purple cabbage can fight against urinary tract infections. Anthocyanins can prevent the ulcers and inflammation caused by H. pylori, the bacteria that causes stomach ulcers and urinary tract infections [5].

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6. Decreases blood pressure

Purple grapes, bilberries, cranberries and blueberries contain resveratrol, a flavonoid that can help decrease blood pressure. Resveratrol helps in relaxing the arterial walls, which allows better blood circulation in the arteries.

What Is The Best Way To Cook Purple Fruits And Vegetables?

One of the best methods of consuming them is to have them raw, steamed or roasted. By doing so, you will get a required amount of anthocyanins as they are water-soluble and are able to dissolve in water.

Tangy Purple Coleslaw Recipe [6]

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups finely sliced purple cabbage
  • 1 cup sauerkraut
  • ½ cup sliced red onion
  • 2 tbsp hemp seeds
  • 2 sliced ambrosia apples
  • For dressing:
  • Honey to taste
  • 2 tsp unrefined sea salt

Method:

  • Mix all the salad and dressing ingredients separately
  • Combine all of them together until the salad is evenly coated.
  • Enjoy your delicious dish!
View Article References
  1. [1] Khoo, H. E., Azlan, A., Tang, S. T., & Lim, S. M. (2017). Anthocyanidins and anthocyanins: colored pigments as food, pharmaceutical ingredients, and the potential health benefits. Food & nutrition research, 61(1), 1361779.
Story first published: Wednesday, January 8, 2020, 20:00 [IST]
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