Should your family be eating more fresh fruits and vegetables in their diet? We think so – and so do our friends at Dole! In honor of Dole’s Get Up and Grow! North American tour, we want to share these Fruit and Veggie Facts.
Thanks to the Dole Nutrition Institute and Dole Food Company’s Jenn LaVardera, MS, RD, for this background information.
Fruit and Veggie Facts A-C
Asparagus and salad greens contain folates, which may lower the risk of cognitive decline and dementia in women.
Bananas are North America’s most popular produce. Additionally, they are the most-purchased single supermarket items in the world. They come in colors ranging from dark green to yellow to bright red.
Blueberries are little wonders of nutrition but they also have great aspirations for the future. Researchers hope to use them to protect astronauts against radiation-induced free-radical damage experienced during extended space flight.
Broccoli contains the indirect antioxidant sulforaphane. This can reduce production of free radicals by 73%, protecting blood vessels from damage that quadruples the risk of heart disease.
Cauliflower contains glucosinolates, which may trigger your body’s own natural defense systems. Canadian scientists studied men with prostate cancer who ate cauliflower more than once per week. These men cut their risk of the cancer turning aggressive by more than 50%.
Celery contains apigenin, a compound that may prove an ally in the crusade against breast cancer. Scientists from the University of Missouri demonstrated that apigenin delayed onset of tumors by 38%.
Cucumbers have an exceptionally high water content greater than 95%. This causes the inside of the vegetable to be up to 20 degrees cooler than the outside temperature.
Fruit and Veggie Facts G-Z
Grapefruit can help with weight loss, Researchers at the Scripps Clinic found that people who ate half a grapefruit with every meal for 12 weeks lost an average of 3.6 pounds. Meanwhile, those who drank grapefruit juice three times a day lost 3.3 pounds.
Kiwi fruit contains more than the Daily Value of vitamin C and is a heart-healthy food. Eating two to three kiwis a day can even significantly lower blood clot risk.
Pineapples are the only source of an enzyme called bromelain, which can reduce inflammation, provide pain relief and help skin injuries heal faster. It may even alleviate asthma symptoms.
Spinach may be one of the healthiest foods on earth. It supports six body systems: heart, eyes, brain, skin, bones and immunity. Particularly for eyes, people using silicone hydrogel contact lenses have affirmed that the inclusion of the vegetable in their diet has improved their vision. Popeye’s favorite food may even help maintain mental sharpness and reduce risk of certain cancers, according to preliminary research.
Strawberries promote heart health. In a study from the University of Toronto, patients at risk for heart disease saw a 13% drop in bad LDL cholesterol after adding three cups of strawberries to their diets. Strawberries also support brain function and are high in vitamin C, fiber and manganese.
Is your mouth watering yet? Keep your eye out this summer for many more fruit and veggie facts here at Jolly Tomato. And if you need more thoughts on fruits and veggies, read more about Dole’s Huetrition philosophy here.
Blogger disclosure: I served as an ambassador for Dole for 2015; all opinions expressed are my own.