Tuesday, 22 July 2008

No rain, only rainbow hope


July 22, 2008
By Syed Akbar
The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has come out with a "colourful" advice for citizens to keep themselves hale and healthy. With the prices of all essential commodities going up in the recent past, the MoHFW wants people to be content with fruits and vegetables to keep the calories intake intact and prevent diseases.
And to ensure that citizens take fruits and vegetables in abundance, the Central government has fancifully named its latest campaign as "the rainbow in your plate". What's this rainbow in the plate, anyway? Seven fruits and vegetables in seven different colours. Is not the idea good? Whatever be the reason behind the Centre's campaign, people will benefit a lot if they take lot of fruits and vegetables. Of course, of different hues!
"Colourful fruits and vegetables provide the wide range of vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals your body needs to maintain good health and energy levels and prevent disease. They reduce the effect of ageing, making you look younger and also prevent many diseases for example, cancer, high blood pressure, heart disease etc. The high potassium content in fruits and vegetables has protective effect on blood pressure, reduces the risk of developing kidney stones and may help to decrease bone loss," says the campaign.
And now about the "rainbow" fruits. Variety is as important as quantity All colours in nature are important. It is important to eat all colours of fruits and vegetables.
Red and orange fruits/vegetables are rich in antioxidants such as vitamin C, vitamin B complex, carotenoids and bioflavonoids and phytochemicals. Yellow and orange ones provide powerful antioxidants.
Green fruits and vegetables contain potent vitamins, phytochemicals such as lutein and indoles, with anti-oxidants, health-promoting benefits. They provide the essential micronutirents like iron to maintain and increase the blood haemoglobin levels.
White, tan, and brown fruits and vegetables contain varying amounts of phytochemicals of interest to scientists, while purple ones lower the risk of
some cancers and maintains urinary tract health.
Just try these fruits and vegetables for a healthy living and save money by not
going in for junk foods. A healthy suggestion from the Health Ministry! An apple a day keeps the doctor away.

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