You may have heard that to be healthy, your plate should look like a rainbow. In fact, you might have even heard it right here on The Leaf! What you may not know is that “The Rainbow Diet” is a real diet.
Actually, there are a several “Rainbow Diets” out there. Some are a riff on the heart-healthy Mediterranean diet, while others are based on age-old traditions. According to the peer-reviewed journal Nutrients, the rainbow is also used as a visual aid by scientists to help people eat diets that stave off disease.
There’s no question that a colorful diet filled with a variety of fruits and vegetables is beneficial for health. But how far should we take this “rainbow” concept, and does it work for weight loss? Learn more about the Rainbow Diet and how it relates to the Nutrisystem program.
Eating the Rainbow
The common thread that connects each rainbow eating approach is consuming natural diet foods in a variety of colors. It’s true that this will provide an array of nutrients your body needs while helping to prevent disease. Check out the list below for the health benefits of each color in the rainbow:
- Red foods like watermelon and tomatoes contain lycopene, says Food Network. This phytochemical has been correlated with a decreased risk of cancer and heart disease. According to ScienceDaily, the American Academy of Neurology found that lycopene might also lower your risk of stroke.
- Orange fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, pumpkins and cantaloupes, are loaded with the antioxidant beta-carotene, says Food Network. According to ScienceDaily, the Journal of the National Cancer Institute found that women with high levels of carotenoids have a decreased risk of breast cancer.
- Yellow foods like lemons, pineapples and mangos are rich in vitamin C, according to Medical News Today. They explain that vitamin C is an antioxidant that supports the immune system and helps to prevent disease. It also plays a role in the collagen building process.
- Green foods are some of the healthiest choices you can make! Dark, leafy green vegetables are rich in vitamin K, says Healthline. This essential nutrient is important for bone, heart and blood health.
- Blue and purple foods, such as blackberries, purple cabbage, eggplant and acai berries, contain powerful antioxidants called anthocyanins. These help to reduce inflammation and prevent disease, says Healthline.
Weight Loss Woes
Eating more plant-based foods has the ability to help you lose weight and improve your overall health and diet. This is because most fruits and vegetables are rich in water. According to ScienceDaily, Penn State research found that a diet high in water-rich foods caused study subjects to lose 30 percent more weight than those who did not put a focus on water-rich options.
While it can improve your health and reduce the risk of disease, eating the rainbow isn’t a program designed for weight loss. It won’t guarantee that you will drop pounds and doesn’t specify calorie needs. You can fill your plate with every color imaginable, but you could still be eating more calories than your body needs. For this reason, the Rainbow Diet alone probably isn’t the best way to lose weight.
The Nutrisystem Rainbow
With Nutrisystem, you can get the benefits of colorful foods combined with a diet that is specifically designed to help you lose weight. With our personalized programs, you also have the option to receive a plan that’s catered to your food preferences, body type and activity goals.
Nutrisystem will not only encourage you to eat more colorful, natural foods but also help you reduce the colors you don’t want—such as highly-processed, “white” foods like sugar and flour that can cause us to overeat. Our goal is to create healthier versions of these favorites that fit into your weight loss goals. You’ll learn to enjoy these foods in proper portions that are good for your health and waistline. Keep eating your favorites like cookies, cake and ice cream that are jam-packed with the fiber and protein your body needs. With expert tips and diet advice from The Leaf and Nutrisystem experts, you’ll be able to work towards actually craving healthy foods!
When you’re not enjoying perfectly portioned Nutrisystem food, Flex Meals will help you practice your cooking skills. You will build weight loss-friendly and healthy recipes that contain all of those rainbow colors. Here at The Leaf Weight Loss Blog, we have thousands of Flex meal recipes to please every palate. Put together a Power Bowl that incorporates fiber-rich veggies, SmartCarbs and protein into a filling, nutrient powerhouse. Create a crunchy, colorful coleslaw that’s loaded with flavor, filling fiber and vitamins your body needs. Make sure to check out our Recipe section and utilize our comprehensive Grocery Guide. This will help you learn and guide you to the proper serving sizes for foods of all colors. It will also teach you which colors you can eat in unlimited quantities (Hint: Think green!).
Non-starchy vegetables are your hunger hero. You will eat at least four servings of non-starchy veggies per day on the Nutrisystem program. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), that’s better than almost 91 percent of Americans! They found that only 9.3% of citizens ate the daily recommended amount of vegetables in 2015. Click here to learn more about what non-starchy vegetables are, why they are important for your weight loss success and how delicious vegetable recipes can improve your diet!
Eating adequate amounts of veggies—about two to three cups per day—has been linked to a reduced risk of obesity, heart disease and diabetes, says the CDC. A study of more than 135,000 people, published in The Lancet, also found that a diet rich in fruits, vegetables and legumes is associated with a lower risk of death.
So, pile your plate with a rainbow! You’ll be healthier, live longer and fight off diseases. But if you’re looking for a weight loss pot of gold, make the end of your rainbow plate Nutrisystem. Our perfectly portioned foods and healthy recipes are designed to help you lose weight while increasing your nutrient intake. Keep enjoying the foods you love and learn how to live a life of healthy eating. Click here to get started! >