Red Bell Peppers
If you're adding bell peppers to your menu, reach for the red. Why red? Red peppers are fully ripened green peppers. Their rich red color comes with twice the vitamin C and 10 times the vitamin A of the immature green peppers on the same plant! In fact, one small red bell pepper contains three times the recommended daily allowance of vitamin C. Red bell peppers also contain the carotenoid lycopene, which lowers the risk of prostate and cervical cancer and are an excellent source of beta-carotene ... and that is just the beginning!
- The vitamin C in red bell peppers is required for the absorption of iron, helping to protect against iron deficiencies along with of your daily vitamin C intake.
- The vtamin B6 and magnesium in red peppers combine to help reduce anxiety, while vitamin B6 is also a natural diuretic, helping to reduce bloating and while protecting against hypertension.
- Red peppers are rich in the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin -- important carotenoids that are found in high concentrations in the macula or center part of the retina-- are vital for protecting the macula from oxygen-related damage. Red bell peppers also help support healthy night vision. The vitamin A found in red peppers is also necessary for healthy eyesight.
- An adequate intake of vitamin B-6 helps your body make neurotransmitters and may reduce risks for breast cancer risk factors, according to a study published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention.
- Red bell peppers can spur a mild thermogenic response that helps you burn more calories while helping maintain a healthy metabolic rate and at 37 calories per medium pepper, you'll have fewer calories to burn!
- The manganese in red bell peppers is important for the development of strong bones and connective tissues.
- The high fiber content in green peppers can also help protect against colon cancer. The vitamin C, beta-carotene, and folic acid found in bell peppers also helps reduce the risk of colon cancer.
It's interesting to note that in addition to their unique colors, all the colors bell pepper have a special array of nutritional benefits. Green peppers are rich in chlorophyll while yellow peppers lead in the amount of lutein and zeaxanthin carotenoids they offer. Orange peppers have more alpha-, beta-, and gamma-carotene. Red peppers have more lycopene and astaxanthin, two important carotenoids.
Bell peppers are a great, tasteful addition to your diet. Enjoy the slightly bitter flavor of green peppers or give them a few more days on the vine to you'll multiply the goodness they offer!
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