By: Bettina – Bolinas, CA

Breakfast for one… I get a bit uninspired when cooking just for myself.

Rather, as I write about this I realize that maybe I get more creative (while less into the planning and less excited about the possibility of creativity). On further thought…  I think that this sometimes also leads to some pretty unique plates that truth be told… work well because I am creating for what my body is asking for right at that moment.  Have you ever sat for a second and asked your body what it craves (“doughnuts” is not your body’s answer, that’s your sugar addiction talking).

This morning I grabbed whatever was available and made a vegetable-mash because if I insist on anything, it’s starting my day with vegetables.  The more, the merrier.  I’ll put them into pancakes if need be.  But I get a full serving of veggies every morning to start my day out on the right foot.

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Today’s breakfast was copious because I had done a little workout and a bit of Pilates and well, I made too much food. But I realized making it, that it was also super colorful and that I should talk about why that’s important.

We keep hearing about anti-oxidants, right? They’re in your face creams, doctors tout them, magazines mention them on seemingly every page, Dr. Oz won’t shut up about them… Well the best way to get these little miracle workers is by eating colorful, unprocessed food.  (No, ketchup is not an anti-oxidant food as much as I love it).  Not to bash animal products, really, but think of the color of (almost) any cooked animal flesh: white, grey or brown =  You need veggies in order to get your anti-oxidant boost.

Red/ Purple/ Blue:   Anthocyanins –  berries, dark grapes, red cabbage, cherries, peaches, black soybeans, black rice… It has been shown that anthocyanins have neuro-protective and anti-inflammatory properties within your cells.

Orange: Carotenoids – are plant pigments;  powerful antioxidants, some of which the body can turn into vitamin A. These antioxidants can help prevent some forms of cancer and heart disease, and enhance your immune response to infections. Woohoo, Carotenoids!

Yellow / Green: Lutein, Zeaxanthin and Meso-Zeaxanthin (say that fast three times) – in a nutshell, important for your eye health.  But dark leafy greens also have a lot of chlorophyll, which is being heavily studied and the transformative, healing power of grass blood has shown amazing benefits.  Unsure?  Click here 50 reasons to drink wheatgrass or just eat many more greens (and chew them well).

The mish-mash ended up being much more delicious than I thought.  It’s was crisp (cabbage), tender (rainbow chard and egg), crunchy (sourdough / flax toast), savory (miso spread on toast), sour (tomatillos) and smooth (avocado).  Plus, when I looked at it, it was a rainbow of colors so beautiful that left me quite sure I was protecting my health for the day! Happiness!

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