There is no simpler way to ensure your little one gets all the goodies they need than by simply selecting a variety of colourful fruits and vegetables for their meals and snacks.
Read on for why you need to make a rainbow not only on their plate but yours too.
These foods are often a good source of vitamin C for healthy growth and development and get their vibrant colour from the pigment known as lycopene, a carotenoid antioxidant.
- Pink grapefruit
Often given super food status due their richness in plant compounds like the flavonoid anthocyanin, these foods can be great for vitamin C, folate, potassium and vitamin K.
- Black berries
- Purple carrots
- Purple cabbage
This fabulous green group of vegetables is one that littlies often pull their noses up at. They can be stronger in flavour so avoid overcooking and if started early you can convert the troupes.
These foods are often good sources of fibre for healthy digestive systems and vitamin C and folate for healthy growth and development.
- Brussels sprouts
- Savoy cabbage
Beta-carotene is the beautifully orange plant pigment with antioxidant actions responsible for the colour of these foods. The body converts beta-carotene into vitamin A, which is necessary for normal vision and contributes to growth and development.
- Sweet potato
- Paw paw
Often overlooked, these foods can easily hold their own nutritionally against foods of brighter colours, particularly the onions, which are rich in the antioxidant flavonoid known as quercetin. Foods in this group may provide fibre and vitamin C and the minerals potassium and manganese.
Most, but not all these rainbow foods will easily adapt to a puree meal, so keep the exceptions to this in mind as your little one progresses with texture and toward family meals.
Mix it up with cooking styles, roasting fruit or veg brings out the richness of flavours that’s not seen with steamed or stewed versions.
And remember the more variety your bub sees and tastes on their plate in early years, the more likely it is that they will be happy confident eaters of a variety of different foods as they grow.
What is your little one’s favourite coloured food? TELL US in the comments below.