(UK Foxes) Have you been watching the BBC’s How To Stay Young? It’s a great, informative, somewhat scary and entertaining programme, well done BBC, good timing too, with all the Sugar Scandal going on…
So, the new thing learned. Purple foods contain a high amount of anthocyanins – pigments belonging to flavonoid group of molecules, that help with keeping blood flow going and provide necessary nutrients. Scientists have started their research comparatively recently but it is quite clear already that everyone can benefit from eating more dark red or purple fruit and veg.
Just to note – that’s naturally occurring purple food…
Seniors of the Okinawa region in Japan have the highest life expectancy in the world, and also the highest health expectancy. They remain vigorous and healthy into old age with relatively few age-related diseases: 50% less brain diseases, 80% smaller chance of heart disease! Research shows this astonishing fact is due to the daily consumption of the purple sweet potatoes that are a regional staple. Okinawans eat over 500gr every day (easy considering they’ve sweet potato ice cream), purple sweet potatoes contain anthocyanins, helping to maintain healthy blood vessels, which in turn have a very positive effect on the brain health. ALSO Okinawans do a lot of gardening (someone has to grow all those purple spuds!) and generally keep very active outdoors.
Purple sweet potatoes are available in the UK (Waitrose, Asian supermarkets), however there are other purple foods that contain more anthocyanins. In fact, aubergine has 1/3 more anthocyanins than sweet potato (88mg per 100g vs 53mg), purple cabbage has approximately the same, but blackcurrant contains a whooping 592mg of anthocyanins per 100g! As portions of vegetables are generally larger than fruit and fruit also has sugar (go easy on those purple smoothies), the main intake should comes from your veg.
Basically to give your blood vessels a little help and to invest in your future health always have something purple on your plate! 🙂
P.S. Research of the 5 Blue Zones, the healthiest places in the world, showed that in all these places the elderly are highly respected, and this benefit of respect played a big role in healthy longevity too! #foodforthought