While eating more veggies and fruit is usually a good idea, eating a variety of colours can boost your intake of different nutrients that will assist different aspects of your health.

Most diets encourage you to eat less and suffer more in order to achieve quick and unsustainable weight loss. That’s not the rainbow diet! Rather than eliminating food groups, this health-promoting diet encourages you to add more colour to your diet.

The rainbow diet is a health-inspired craze that encourages you to consume red, orange, yellow, green, and purple fruits and vegetables. Plants have many pigments, or phytonutrients, that give them their colour. Plants of different colours have been linked to higher levels of various nutrients and health advantages.

The Key to a Healthy Immune System

Including a varied range of plant-based wholefoods in your diet is critical to supporting a healthy gut, and our gut health influences a healthy-functioning immune system (the gut contains around 70% of our immune system). Incorporating a diverse range of high-fibre, plant foods into our diets helps to ensure nutrient diversity and maintains a healthy gut microbiota.

Certain phytonutrients, which are natural substances that help defend plants from external dangers, determine the colour of fruits and vegetables, and each colour signifies an abundance of specific nutrients. Let’s look at what the colour of your food may tell you about its nutrition and how you might consume a more colourful variety of phytonutrients to assist your gut (and body) function optimally.

The Colour Red 

Red fruits and vegetables are high in antioxidants that fight disease, such as lycopene and anthocyanins. It protects our hearts and lowers our chance of stroke, prevents and even fights cancer, particularly prostate and breast cancer, and is beneficial to urinary tract health and memory!Tomatoes, beets, radishes, cherries, strawberries, red onions, and red peppers are high in lycopene.

Regular eating of tomatoes and tomato products has been demonstrated to lower the incidence of prostate cancer. Watermelon contains more lycopene than tomatoes, and the lycopene may be more bioavailable as well.

Watermelon is also high in citrulline, a phytonutrient that may help treat mild to severe erectile dysfunction.Red vegetables, such as beets, have been proven to influence the nitric oxide pathway, allowing blood vessels to dilate. This increases circulation and lowers the risk of heart disease.

Eating red foods is also beneficial to your skin. The polyphenols and antioxidants found in red fruits and vegetables may help prevent skin cancer and protect the skin from the damaging effects of sunshine, excessive inflammation, and wounds.

The Colours Orange and Yellow

Orange and yellow fruits and vegetables are high in nutrients such as vitamin C, beta-carotene which the human body converts to vitamin A, zeaxanthin, potassium, flavonoids, lycopene, and folate.

Citrus fruits, such as oranges, contain hesperidin, a unique phytonutrient that aids in blood flow. This has serious health implications. If you have cold hands and feet, eating an orange every day may help to keep them warm. Even more crucial, citrus consumption may lower your risk of stroke.

Some members of the yellow/orange food group, such as carrots, cantaloupe, squash, and corn, are rich in folate. Folate is one of the B vitamins required for the formation of red and white blood cells, the conversion of carbohydrates into energy, and the production of DNA and RNA. Adequate folate intake is thus critical during periods of fast growth, such as pregnancy, infancy, and adolescence.

Pumpkin, orange kumara, and butternut squash are all high in potassium, which is necessary for blood pressure regulation.Pineapple contains bromelaine, a rare antioxidant that can help relieve indigestion and prevent swelling and infection.

The Colour Green

Greens are among the healthiest foods we can consume. Green fruits and vegetables are high in lutein, isothiocyanates, isoflavones, and vitamin K, all of which are necessary for good blood and bone health. It prevents cataracts and slows age-related macular degeneration. The folic acid, a vital ingredient for having healthy infants, is also present and maintains the strength of our bones, teeth, and nails while also preventing blood clots!

Green fruits and vegetables are high in vitamin C, which aids iron absorption, protects cells from oxidative damage caused by free radicals, boosts immune system function, aids in wound healing, and keeps teeth and gums healthy.

Cruciferous vegetables such as cabbage, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts have been proven to boost immune system function and contain indoles, which may help prevent cancer. Saponins, a strong phytochemical that is present in green plant-based foods, have anti-cancer capabilities and may inhibit the growth of cancer cells. Green leafy vegetables and fruits have been linked to a lower risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

The Colours Blue and Purple

These are high in anthocyanins and antioxidants, which are linked to better brain health and memory. They also aid in the reduction of blood pressure and the risk of heart disease and stroke. Blueberries, figs, blackberries, purple cabbage, eggplant, Concord grapes, and plums are also good sources.

The bioactive phytochemicals included in berries help to repair damage caused by oxidative stress and inflammation.

Purple foods’ resveratrol may thus help prevent disease and enhance heart health. Purple and blue foods, such as blackcurrants and blueberries, have also been related to improved memory and a lower risk of cognitive decline. Blueberries and red grapes include anthocyanins, which may help reduce the risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes, as well as promote healthy weight management and a balanced inflammatory response. Red grapes are also high in polyphenols and antioxidants. One of these is resveratrol, which has been linked to increased nitric oxide synthesis and improved heart health.

The Colours Brown and White

Though not as colourful as other items, white and brown veggies are nevertheless nutritious alternatives. While brightly colored foods are frequently highlighted for their health advantages, white plant foods include significant elements that should be included in a well-balanced diet.

Cauliflower, like broccoli, is a cruciferous vegetable high in sulforaphane, an anticancer chemical. Garlic and onions on the other hand are members of the allium vegetable family and contain the potent health-promoting chemicals allicin and quercetin. Aged garlic has been demonstrated to be more anti-inflammatory, immune-boosting, as well as anti-allergic than raw garlic.

White button mushrooms have also been shown to suppress aromatase activity and breast cancer cell proliferation. This common mushroom also contains antibacterial properties.


You may not have developed an appreciation for produce if you grew up eating only a few fruits and veggies. Without our gut microbiota, a rainbow diet would have half the health impact. Rainbow plant foods contain fibre (prebiotics), which feeds our diverse microbial environment and ensures that we develop the species that are most useful to us. 

Food is also the source we obtain the majority of our intestinal microorganisms from. As a result, the more foods you consume, especially plant foods, the more diversified your gut flora will be. The first step in establishing a healthy gut microbiota is to consume enough fresh, plant-based foods that contain fermentable fibres. Eating what your gut loves will surely make positive changes.

Not only will your gut flora appreciate it, but a healthy, happy gut will aid in the maintenance and regulation of all 12 bodily systems, including your brain. Eating well isn’t some elusive goal; it’s a necessary key to unlocking a brighter, more vital, and optimally healthy existence. A life that is our natural right.

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