Friday, July 1, 2016

4 Key Reasons to Eat a Variety of Colorful Fruits and Veggies Each Day

Eat More Color-rich Fruits ands Vegetables

For optimum health, top nutrition minds advise us to eat a variety of at least 5 to 9 servings of color-rich vegetables, legumes, beans, nuts, seeds, and fruit a day. 

Post updated 7/31/22

Brightly colored low-fat plant-based whole foods aren't just visually appealing. They are nature's way of highlighting a broad range of nutrients key to good health. 

In its original state, each vegetable or fruit is low in saturated fat, pleasing to the palette, fills us up, elevates mood and sense of well-being, but doesn’t make us feel overstuffed. 

4 Key Reasons to Eat a Variety of Colorful  Fruits and Veggies 

1. Colorful fruits and vegetables prevent or reduces the severity of disease. When we consume a combination of cooked (lightly steamed or baked without oil) and uncooked color rich produce daily, research shows our food choices directly influence our health. 

A whole food plant-based eating plan contributes to preventing heart disease, some types of cancer, osteoporosis, high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, stroke, and birth defects. 

Learn more about ingredients. For example, see the latest studies and check videos about vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, and nuts and seeds from Dr. Michael Greger. He's a nutrition researcher/MD and founder of

Investigate a 
nutrient content scoring system called  ANDI scores. It rates foods on a scale from 1 to 1000, and evaluates by using an extensive range of micronutrients including vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals and antioxidants. 

Happy Woman Eats Colorful Fruits and Veggies

2. Eating colorful fruit and veggies improves mood and sense of well-being. Research conducted by Bonnie Beezhold of the University of Arizona and Carol S. Johnston, published February 14, 2012 in Nutrition Journal indicates that "Restricting meat, fish, and poultry improved some domains of short-term mood state in modern omnivores. To our knowledge, this is the first trial to examine the impact of restricting meat, fish, and poultry on mood state in omnivores." Mood scores improved after only 2 weeks.

3. Eating colorful fruits and veggies stabilizes weight. Five to nine portions of them each day provides a sense of satisfaction after eating a meal, and reduces cravings to load up on excess calories or resort to eating junk foods and processed products. Most processed foods are high salt, high sugar, high fat, and chemically enhanced (and often contribute to weight gain and/or poor health). πŸ’ͺ🌿🍎🌱

See this documented guide from Kaiser Permanente for more about a Healthier Way to Eat. 

4. Eat foods that provide essential vitamins, minerals, nutrients, fiber, and antioxidants to help us function at peak levels. 

When we eat a wide range of colorful low fat whole plant-based foods daily, we please our taste buds and end hunger as we ingest plant-based protein, complex carbohydrates, water, healthy fat, minerals, vitamins, and nutrients our body needs to maintain health, energy, and even increase longevity. 

For best results, combine healthy eating with an active lifestyle. Include elements like exercise, relaxation, sound sleep, social connections, and abstention from smoking and alcohol consumption.

To maximize the variety of vitamins, minerals, nutrients, and antioxidants eaten in food, it's important to consume at least two different colored vegetables and fruits with each meal. 

Shop at a nearby market, health food store, farmer's market, or pick veggies and fruits fresh from your garden. 

Select only those fruits and veggies that are in-season, unprocessed whole plant-based foods to get the most bang for your buck. 

In season whole foods are less expensive and haven't traveled long distances to get to the market and your table. 

Don't eat the same ones every day, as you need to vary your selection to cover all your nutritional bases. 

For your convenience I've listed many of the tastiest ones below (most are my favorites).

Healthy Color Rich Produce

RED tomatoes, raspberries, strawberries, beets, red grapes, red pepper, watermelon, cherries, red kidney beans, red apples

BLUE/PURPLE blueberries, blackberries, black olives, purple figs, plums, black beans, red cabbage (purple), eggplant

YELLOW/ORANGE summer and winter squash, carrots, sweet potatoes, apricots, cantaloupe, lemon, grapefruit, oranges

GREEN spinach, Brussels sprouts, bok choy, collards, chard, kale, broccoli, lentils, kiwi, dark leafy salad greens, avocado, parsley

GREEN/WHITE onions, garlic, pears, celery, arugula, asparagus, leeks, mushrooms, cauliflower, quinoa


Eat at least two portions of a combination of red, orange, yellow, green, purple/blue, and white fruits or vegetables at each meal. 

An eating style that provides plentiful fiber, protein, vitamins, minerals, complex carbohydrates, and antioxidants for supports total wellness and elevates mood. 

Look at the fruit and veggie grid below for more ideas.

Fruit and Vegetable Grid

Do you have any tips for eating more fruits and veggies? What are your go-to veggies and fruits? 

Are you willing to try new ones to up your health quotient as well as make your mouth water? 

Please comment below. Don't put links in comments as they won't be published that way.

Share with others, if you like what you see and get social with me. Visit my Website and take a look see there. 

You'll find self-care and color energy tips as well resources for readers, writers, and all those who want to improve the quality of daily living.

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  1. I so needed this reminder now when there are so many fresh and in-season fruits and veggies available. I know that I do feel better, physically and mentally, when I eat colorfully.

    1. Thanks Susan for your comment and support. Summer is such a bountiful season. Wishing you happy, colorful eating this 4th of July weekend and be well. Live well. Lead a colorful life!

    2. I too am thankful for the reminder. I need to incorporate color in all aspects of my life. I appreciate you posting such a wonderful and useful blog !

    3. Thanks Joy for the support and glad I can be of service to my readers.That's one of the great things about blogging. Spreading the word about healthful living. Wishing you a beautiful 4th of July. Nan

  2. Replies
    1. I second that idea of eating the rainbow. Love the colorful flowers, watermelon, and photos at your blog. Hope my readers will check it out. Have a great 4th of July. Nan

  3. Happily, I eat an assortment of fruits and vegetables each day.Thank you for sharing 4 Key Reasons to Eat a Variety of Colorful Fruits and Veggies Each Day with us on the Plant-Based Potluck Party Link Up. I'm pinning and sharing.

    1. Thanks so much Deborah for hosting this great Plant-based Party Link Up. I get great recipe and meal planning ideas, as well as food facts too. Nancy Andres

  4. A great reminder to eat more fresh fruit and veggies for better health! Thanks for linking up with lets get real.

    1. Thanks for the comment Heather. "Wishing you a colorful, veggie-and fruit-ful day!" Nancy Andres

  5. I love a colorful plate with different types of fruits and vegetables. It sounds like there are many benefits to having an assortment of fruits and vegetables. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Me too Keri. We eat first with our eyes. Wishing you a colorful plate and happy day! Nancy Andres

  6. This is a great post-- and so important for good health! I am a firm believer in eating all the colors of the rainbow in my diet... and when I can't get all of them in a day, I take my Juice Plus+ to bridge that gap :)

    1. Thanks Gina for the compliment. Know from your blog you walk the talk and pass it forward to your kids. Way to go girl! Nancy Andres

  7. I love summer because I can buy fresh locally. Yum. All those ripe fruits and vegetables.

    1. Thanks for the comment Darlene. I agree about buying local and freshly picked. Wishing you happy eating. What specific veggies and fruits do you enjoy?

  8. This is wonderful information and we should all be reminded often about how important those fruits and veggies are. I eat a lot of vegetables.
    Thanks for stopping by Tumbleweed Contessa and you nice comment.

    Wishes for (colorful) tasty dishes,

    1. Thanks Lita. I appreciate your comments and love your blog. Thanks for the kind wishes. Same back at you. Wishing you colorful tasty dishes and a colorful day! Nancy Andres

  9. I love my fruits and veggies and start my day with a large fruit salad each day, follow up with a large organic vegetable salad for lunch and I drink fresh smoothies and juices during the day. Thank you for sharing 4 Key Reasons to Eat a Variety of Colorful Fruits and Veggies Each Day with us at the Plant-based Potluck Party. I'm pinning and sharing.

  10. Wonderful that you eat so healthfully. Thanks for hosting and giving bloggers an opportunity to share our knowledge and ideas together. Hugs, Nancy Andres

  11. Great article - I learned early on that each color provides a different nutrient - so a variety gives you more balance. Thanks for sharing at the What's for dinner party. Hope your week was amazing.

    1. Thanks so much for your visit and comment. Thanks again for hosting the What's for dinner party and have a beautiful day.

  12. Thank you for the reminder. I need to eat more fruits and veggies if different colors.

    1. Thanks so much Christy for the comment. It's amazing how many colorful fruit and veggie varieties there are in the world and I wish you much enjoyment and many health benefits as you eat them.

  13. Judee from Gluten Free A-Z Blog: Love this post because it is so important to make sure our diets are full of colorful fruits and vegetables for their protective antioxidant qualities.

  14. I couldn't agree more! I'm a big veggie gardener and I eat my fill of color every single day.

    1. Thanks for thee comment Amy. Appreciate you have a veggie garden and live so sustainably each day.