Secondary plant compounds: Colorful in the mouth

The motto for the daily selection of fruit and vegetables is: As much diversity as possible. The intense colors of fruits and vegetables are a sign of a large amount of flavonoids, also called "plant dyes" or "phytochemicals". These plant substances protect the plant from environmental damage. These are the most diverse chemical compounds that occur exclusively in plants and positively influence a number of metabolic processes such as cholesterol metabolism and blood sugar levels in the human body.

Protection without calories

In addition to the vitamins A, C and E also protect various phytochemicals from aggressive oxygen radicals. They have a positive effect on inflammatory processes, the immune system and carcinogenesis. Other phytochemicals protect against bacteria. It is therefore important to consume as many fruits and vegetables as possible in order to absorb the various phytochemicals.

Fruits and vegetables are ideal fitters that have a satisfying effect and even with very generous consumption (the scientists of the German Institute of Nutritional Medicine and Dietetics plead for a consumption of up to 1000 grams per day) do not huddle on hips or stomach. Especially after the holidays, when perhaps one or the other kilo has grown due to the attractive "all inclusive offers" of the tour operators, the fresh fruit and vegetables offer a healthy opportunity to melt them quickly.

Some tips for adequate fruit and vegetable consumption

  • If you prefer regional, seasonal fruits and vegetables, you can get a large part of their vitamins through short storage and transport times
  • Fruit juices for breakfast add momentum to the day
  • Vegetable juices in the evening can replace the vegetable portion
  • At each meal, but also in between eating fruits and vegetables
  • "Colorful" salads are suitable to absorb as many different plant substances and vitamins
  • Fruits and vegetables (apple, carrot or radish) are very good as a break catering
  • Also, bread meals can be decorated with fresh tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers and enhanced in content
  • Muesli, quark, yoghurt or pudding dishes, milkshakes, juices, soups, casseroles, rice pans are suitable for fruit and vegetable muffle

Various phytochemicals and their occurrence

  • Carotenoids: carrots, red and yellow vegetables, fruits
  • Phytosterols: in plant seeds and oils, for example, golden yellow linseed
  • Saponins: legumes
  • Glucosinolates: kohlrabi, horseradish, mustard
  • Polyphenols: in the fringes of fruits and vegetables, whereas in outdoor vegetables the content is higher
  • Protease inhibitors: legumes, cereals
  • Monoterpenes: Flavorings such as peppermint, caraway oil, citrus oil

Source: German Institute of Nutritional Medicine and Dietetics

Share with friends

Leave your comment