The True Health Benefits Of Eating A Rainbow

The True Health Benefits Of Eating A Rainbow

This article was written by Colin Rose, a Senior Associate Member of the Royal Society of Medicine, who has been writing on health science for over 30 years.

Plant foods do not just give us vitamins and minerals – they provide us with highly valuable ‘phyto-chemicals’. These are natural compounds that plants create as they grow – partly to create energy from the sun, but also to protect themselves from damage caused by excessive solar exposure or from insects.

Many of these phyto-chemicals are called polyphenols. We are discovering that these provide us with a range of important health benefits – from a reduction in the risk of certain cancers, to stronger hearts, improved immunity and as a result healthier aging.

Many of the most powerful of these phyto-chemicals and ones that create the colors in plants. Here is a summary of these color micro-nutrients and what the latest science shows:

Plant Color

Foods Where You Find Them

Researched Health Benefits

Blue and Purple


Blueberries, eggplants/aubergines, beetroot, purple grapes, currants, and plums

Anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant - reduced risk of some cancers; improved heart, gut and cognitive health/ healthy aging



Red apples, tomatoes, red bell peppers, raspberries, cherries and strawberries

Anti-inflammatory: A lower risk of heart disease and of some cancers (may reduce breast and prostate cancer risk) and improved cognitive function




Carrots, oranges, onions, ginger yellow and orange bell peppers, garlic, corn grapefruit and yellow watermelon


Anti-oxidant: A lower risk of heart disease and of some cancers; maintained healthy vision; and a stronger immune system




Broccoli, kale, green peppers, kiwi, salad greens, beans, cabbage, asparagus and spinach


Anti-inflammatory: A lower risk of some cancers; healthy vision; and strong bones and teeth



The Power Of Synergy

Every one of the colorful plants we have listed has its own health benefits, but when they are combined, the effect is often multiplied – 2+2= 5, 6 or even 7.

That’s why health experts constantly advise us to eat a rainbow. And at least 5 portions of fruits and vegetables a day.

To help I have provided a link to a food plan that is based on extensive research from top universities over many years.

See: The Delay Ageing Food Plan – Delay Ageing (

There is no doubt that a mainly plant based diet strongly supports your health – but as you will see from the food plan, you certainly don’t have to go vegan or even vegetarian – unless for ethical reasons.

Mainly plant based is the phrase to remember!

Back to blog