Eating more fruits and vegetables can improve your health. Not only will you add nutrients and fiber, but you can reduce your risk of cardiovascular diseases and cancer.1 Unfortunately, many people find it hard to eat enough of this powerful produce, often because they get bored with the same old options. But if there’s a farmers’ market in your area, you have an easy and fun way to expand your possibilities.
There are lots of reasons to love your farmers’ market, but one of the biggest is the variety of produce available. Variety is important because different foods provide different nutrients. But how can you make sure you’re eating what your body needs? Just look at the colors. Research shows that eating many colors of fruits and vegetables provides a healthy mix of nutrients in your diet.2
An easy way to get the most nutrition from your farmers’ market is to “eat the rainbow.” This means trying fruits and vegetables from a wide range of colors. Here’s a starter guide to a rainbow of fruits and veggies—and some ideas on how to cook with them. Each time you visit your farmers’ market, make it a goal to try one or two new things.
Orange and yellow: turmeric, persimmons, star fruit, squash, sweet potatoes, Asian pears, ginger. Try our recipe for roasted root vegetables, featuring sweet potatoes, or a warm and hearty butternut squash apple bisque.
Green: okra, spinach, avocado, watercress, fresh herbs, artichokes. Versatile and nutritious, spinach makes an appearance in our chocolate peanut butter banana smoothie. And there are lots of ways to use avocado, including our crunchy and creamy avocado toast recipe.
Blue and purple: huckleberries, eggplant, plums, figs, purple cauliflower, purple potatoes. Try sweet and flavorful figs in our pork medallions with fig-balsamic reduction recipe, or swap in purple cauliflower for this zesty chicken stir-fry.
White and Brown: parsnips, kohlrabi, napa cabbage, fennel. Try parsnips in our hearty roasted root vegetable recipe, or experiment with a vegetable mix and add even more flavor with one of our quick and easy salad dressings.
At the farmers’ market, you’ll find new options to add more nutrition, variety, and fun to your diet. Plus, it’s a great way to make the most of the summer. Check out more tips for a better farmers’ market trip, and explore more healthy eating ideas by talking with a MOBE Guide. Get started today.
1. Dagfinn Aune et al, “Fruit and vegetable intake and the risk of cardiovascular disease, total cancer and all-cause mortality—a systematic review and dose-response meta-analysis of prospective studies,” International Journal of Epidemiology Volume 46, (2017): 1029–1056, https://academic.oup.com/ije/article/46/3/1029/3039477?login=false.
2. Yu-jie Zhang et al, “Antioxidant Phytochemicals for the Prevention and Treatment of Chronic Diseases,” Molecules (2015): 21138–21156, https://www.mdpi.com/1420-3049/20/12/19753.