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    Archive for the ‘cranberries’ Category

    You Ask, I Answer: Colorful Fruits and Vegetables

    WintersquashApart from bananas, what other fruits and vegetables contain the cool-sounding phytonutrient delphinidin?  I don’t want to assume white just because it is bananas.

    — Brandon (last name unknown)
    (Location Unknown

    In light of your post about specific vegetable servings, what are examples of orange vegetables, besides carrots? Do sweet potatoes or winter squash count?

    — Purnima Anand
    New York, NY

    Brandon: Delphinidin, which has been studied extensively and shown to be a powerful chemopreventive phytonutrient (meaning it is quite powerful at squashing tumor cells), is also prevalent in blackberries, blueberries, cranberries, elderberries, raspberries, and strawberries.

    Start your day off with a blueberry-banana-strawberry shake and you’ll get your delphinidin on!

    Purnima: The following vegetables are categorized as “orange vegetables”.  The classification is, of course, based on color, but also on the specific phytonutrients, antioxidants, and carotenoids these foods offer:

    • Acorn squash
    • Butternut squash
    • Carrots
    • Hubbard squash
    • Pumpkin
    • Rutabaga
    • Sweet potatoes
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    You Ask, I Answer: Dried Cranberries

    [I just read your posting on apple butter and had a question about] dried cranberries.

    Are they any good for you because I was reading the nutritional info and it just seems like carbs!

    — Anonymous
    Via the blog

    All fruits, except for avocados, are basically pure carbohydrate.

    I say basically because some might offer 0.2 or so grams of protein.

    The fact that fruit is made exclusively of carbohydrates does not make it unhealthy or a bad choice.

    When you eat a piece of fruit (not drink fruit juice or have gummy candy “with fruit” or eat fruit-flavored sherbet), you are consuming fiber, naturally occurring sugars, vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals.

    The word “carb” became akin to a curse word because it erroneously equated “empty carbohydrates”, which are void of any nutrition (think donuts, cookies, and Goldfish crackers), with truly nourishing ones like oats, quinoa, brown rice, fruits, and vegetables.

    It is interesting that you point out dried fruit, though, as it can be a bit tricky to decipher.

    On one hand, raisins — essentially grapes tha have been sunbathing for too long without UV protection — are a very nutritious snack.

    They are a good source of potassium, selenium, and iron, and offer fiber mainly in the form of inulin.

    Cranberries run into a problem, though. When dried (i.e.: become Craisins), they become so tart that sucrose (table sugar) must be added.

    And we’re not talking a light sprinkling.

    In turn, they become more candy-like and lose some of their awesomely healthy fruit properties.

    If dried fruit is your choice of snack, reach for naturally sweet options like raisins, dried mangoes, dried apples, and dates (dried figs), which rely on their naturally-occurring sweetness to satisfy your sweet tooth.

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