The importance of color in food

This article was endorsed by Elisenda Carballido - Dietitian nutritionist. Postgraduate in Phytotherapy and master in Nutrition and Metabolism.

The meaning of food colors for health


What does color in food mean?

The color of food is a natural system of plants to attract the attention of predators, so that they consume the edible parts of the plant and then spread their seeds and reproduce the species.

In return, plant foods have nutritional and medicinal properties for the body, that are a source of energy and phytochemicals that the body needs to live.

The color of the food is determined by its composition. So, for example, purple foods are rich in anthocyanins. The green color indicates the presence of carotenoids and some are red because of pigment lycopene.

These plant substances have therapeutic effects in the body, They improve the health of the circulatory system, benefit liver function, protect vision, stimulate immunity, etc.

Theory of food Colors

” Let your food be your medicine and your medicine your food”.

This sentence of Hippocrates in the year 377 b.C. illustrates the undeniable importance of food for body health. This way of thinking has been for centuries the first medicine against diseases.

The ancient Chinese Medicine talks about the properties of color in foods through the various systems that make up the body. This explains that the body is composed of different organs and systems that must work in conjunction.

Color theory according to the traditional Chinese medicine
Color Organs Taste
White Lungs and Large intestine Spicy
Orange-yellow Stomach and Pancreas Sweet
Red Heart and Small intestine Acid
Green Liver and Gallbladder Bitter
Black Kidneys and Bladder Salty

The personal preference or appetite for one food or other is given by the energy requirements or nutritive requirements the body passes at a definite time. For example, pregnant women often feel fondness for strawberries:

Strawberries are red food that benefit the cardiovascular system and circulation (because during this period they must work harder to feed the fetus) and also are good for small intestine (because it increases its absorption capacity for more food). Nutritionally, strawberries are rich in vitamin C and folic acid, very important nutrients during pregnancy.

According to the Theory of colors, the red color of strawberries benefits our intestine and favors circulation

Benefits of food for its colors


Properties of color in food

punto rojo More information on properties of food colors.

Written by Editorial Botanical-online team in charge of content writing

22 April, 2019

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Botanical-online is an informative page that describes, among other topics, the traditional uses of plants from a therapeutic point of view. Their descriptions do not replace professional advice. Botanical-online is not responsible for self-medication and recommends consulting with the physician.