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What would make a 30 year old woman gleefully skip on the spot like a school-girl?
  • A proposal?
  • A new car?
  • Finding $100?
Well, all have happened to me before, but none made me quite so happy as the day I laid my hands on a bunch of purple carrots at the markets.
Sad, maybe. But true… and yum!
There have been a few times that the site of a purple vegetable have brought a smile to my face. In South America there are a whole variety of corn species that are large, purple and super-nutritious.

My recent purple carrot experience got my thinking of the variety that nature provides us with but yet we still don’t even know the half of it. And when it comes to purple, do we all really know how special these fruits and veggies are?
Regular consumption of purple or blue coloured fruits and veg has been associated with a lowered risk of metabolic syndrome, heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes.
And not to mention the high antioxidant kick that purple/blue fruits and veg deliver. They also contain anthocyanins and phenolics that promote memory function, anti-ageing, cancer fighting and urinary tract-health (always a plus, right?)
But first, how do we measure antioxidants? Well it’s something called the ORAC value
What’s the ORAC? 
ORAC stands for oxygen radical absorbance capacity. Researchers at the National Institute of Aging developed ORAC testing as a way to measure the level of antioxidant protection of a product or food. If a product has a high ORAC value, it has the ability to kill many free radicals.
Here’s a snapshot of some well known purple fruits, their benefits and ORAC value.
Acai Berry – great source of fibre, heart healthy fatty acids and free radical fighting anti-oxidants
ORAC value = 102,700 units per 100ml serving
Goji Berry – I’ve blogged on this berry before. Used medicinally for centuries, this berry boosts the immune system with Vitamin C and beta carotene
ORAC value = 25,300 units per 100ml serving
Blueberry – the muchloved bluest of the berries ranks really high on the antioxidant scale and improves memory, fights ageing, cancer and heart disease
ORAC value = 6552 units per 100ml serving
Pomegranate – rich in Vitamins A, C and E and can prevent cholesterol build-up in the arteries
ORAC value = 2341 units per 100ml serving
Cranberry – prevents and treats urinary tract infections but also promotes health cholesterol levels and cancer
ORAC value = 865 units per 100ml serving
Add them to smoothies, juices, morning muesli or porridge, sprinkle into salads even!
Now, when it comes to veggies, the more fresh veggies included in your diet, the better, but why not make them purple? You get the benefit of vitamins, minerals, fibre and antioxidants.

Try these:

  • Purple cauliflower
  • Purple carrots,
  • Eggplant,
  • Red Cabbage,
  • Radish
  • Purple Heart potatoesBeets
  • Eggplant
  • Kohlrabi (also known as German turnip)
  • Red Lettuce
  • Ruby Chard
  • Rhubarb
  • Turnips
  • Purple Belgian Endives
If you aren’t familiar with these vegetables, ask your farmer’s market for some advice.  Or you could try growing your own. Prepare and eat the same as you would any other veggie – steam, stir-fry, bake, boil, enjoy raw. The colour adds alot of fun to your meal and can make the same old thing look fresh and new. Not to mention your body renewed!
Colour me purple!
Signing off with an exhale.
Pause. Listen. Live.


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