Have you had a chance to talk to your kiddos about eating the rainbow? This is the idea that we should be choosing a variety of different-colored whole foods throughout the day and the week. Of course, eating the rainbow refers to naturally occurring colors on the plate, mainly from fruits and vegetables. So sorry…Skittles and gummy worms don’t count.
Eating the colors of the rainbow can help with wellness in each of us. For example, red foods (like apples, red onions, red peppers, strawberries, and tomatoes) support healthy heart and memory. Orange/yellow foods (like carrots, squash, lemons, mango, and pineapple) support healthy eyes, heart, and immune function. Green foods (like asparagus, broccoli, cucumbers, grapes, green beans, and peas) support healthy bones, teeth, and eyes. And blue/purple foods (like eggplant, beets, blueberries, and figs) support healthy aging and memory. In the New York Times blog post, Making The Case For Eating Fruit, it states, “Dr. David L. Katz, director of the Yale University Prevention Research Center, said that ‘to maximize the benefit, you actually want a variety’ of fruits. He advises ‘eating the rainbow,’ since different colors signal different types of antioxidants and nutrients.”
At Bixby, we are lucky enough to have a beautiful garden, filled with colors of the rainbow from carrots to tomatoes to squash and zucchini, beans, lettuces, kale, garlic, fresh herbs, and so so much more.
Here are some fun ways to get your kids involved at home:
1.) Challenge your kiddos to fill at least half their plate with colors of the rainbow.
2.) Pick a color theme of the week. This is also a great way to introduce “new” foods.
3.) Keep a rainbow calendar and talk about your favorites.
4.) Check out this awesome resource: www.todayiatearainbow.com
And try out one of my favorite recipes:
Rainbow Pizza (serves 4)
Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.
2 pieces of Naan, Pita, Whole Wheat Tortillas, or Pizza Crust
4 cups Variety of rainbow veggies (such as beets, red onions, tomatoes, peppers, broccoli, etc.)
½ cup cheese (mozzarella or your choice)
½ cup pizza sauce
Additional toppings of your choice: Italian Seasoning, parmesan, fresh herbs, red pepper flakes)
– Spread the sauce, then the cheese on the “crust.” Arrange the veggies in a rainbow. Cook until veggies are crisp and the cheese is melted, about 20 minutes. Enjoy 😊