Healthy Living A to Z: O is for Orange

Copyright 2014 by R.A. Robbins
Copyright 2014 by R.A. Robbins

Today we are talking about the color orange. The orange color in carrots, pumpkin, squash, oranges, apricots, cantaloupe, nectarines, yams (and others) comes from carotenoids, the best known of which is Beta Carotene. It is also found in dark green leafy vegetables, another reason to eat your spinach.

Orange is not just a bright, happy color, it has health benefits. In addition to being an immune system booster, and promoting eye health, beta carotene helps create Vitamin A, a powerful anti-oxidant that helps reduce the harmful effects of free radicals and potentially reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer.

The best way to get beta carotene is through food. If orange foods have not been a staple of your diet, you get to explore ways to use them. An adventure, Oh Boy! So make some pumpkin soup, sweet potato oven fries, mashed sweet potatoes or pumpkin pasta (but don’t forget the carrots and oranges) and have fun.

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