Fruits and vegetables are a boon to health not only because of their fibre and vitamins. There are also other compounds in them that give them their nutritional power – polyphenols. These are a class of beneficial compounds that includes flavonoids, lutein and zeaxantin, allicin and carotenoids.

There are more than 8,000 different types of polyphenols in plant foods. These compounds give fresh plants their vibrant colour. When you eat them, they act as antioxidants and protect and feed your gut.

Consuming foods rich in polyphenols can:

> Promote and maintain digestive health
> Prevent tumour and cancer growth
> Help manage blood-sugar levels
> Prevent bacterial overgrowth
> Promote optimal brain health
> Protect against inflammation
> Improve immune function

Plant foods that are high in polyphenols: cruciferous vegetables, leafy greens, citrus fruits, berries, nuts, and herbs and spices. Green tea, olive oil, red wine, dark chocolate and coffee beans are other good sources.

~ Edited excerpts from a post by Longevity Lifestyle