by Caroline Sheldon
In her second instalment, Midlife nutrition expert Caroline Sheldon shows you the benefits behind seasonal rainbow eating
Caroline is pictured here amongst the freshest of organic lettuces in the pioneering vegetable garden at Le Manoir Quat' Saisons in Oxfordshire. Caroline is wearing the statement autumn Octavia dress by Ridley London in the beautiful olive Mabelle Hall silk satin Liberty print
In my previous post for Ridley, I introduced you to how to organise your meals on your journey to ageless beauty. Today we will look at what to eat as you travel to that desirable destination. I recently spoke about the importance of eating in alignment with our seasons at Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons. Our food is information for our genes and our immune system. If we want to look younger and feel better, we must chose the food which sends the correct message to our genes and our cells. We must chose food which contains the raw materials (vitamins and minerals) which we need to manufacture our hormones, our feel good neurotransmitters and our bones and to feed our brains. So, how do we do that?
We tap into the magic of eating in alignment with our seasons. We tap into the magic of eating produce which is grown organically in soil which is abundant in minerals. We tap into the magic of eating locally grown produce which hasn’t lost its nutritional value by the time it arrives on our plates.
Plants contain a rich banquet of phytochemicals – phytochemicals are biologically active substances which benefit our bodies. The pigments of the fruit and vegetables give us a clue as to the benefits they bring us. By eating all the colours, in each of the seasons, when the fruits and vegetables are at their very best, we are giving a great gift to ourselves and to everyone around our table. For example, we can feast on:
Yellow Produce including such as squash and yellow onions to support our digestion and our stomach and pancreatic health.
Orange Produce such as carrots and pumpkins to support reproduction, ovulation, progesterone synthesis, oestrogen metabolism and both male and female fertility, and a reduced risk of pre-diabetes.
Red Produce like apples, raspberries, tomatoes and beetroot to inhibit inflammation, support an efficient immune system and decrease cholesterol.
Green Produce including Brussel sprouts, kale, lettuce, leeks and beans to support cardiovascular health, including our circulation and the integrity of our blood vessels. They can improve our ability to tolerate exercise and they provide the folate which drives our essential life force (the methylation cycle) and powers the production of our serotonin (feel content) and dopamine (feel motivated).
Purple Produce such as blackberries, edible violets, purple basil and purple kale support learning, memory and mood.
The beauty of eating seasonal produce is that elaborate recipes and hours in the kitchen become a thing of the past. It could not be easier to build a delicious plate of food to support your health in the myriad of ways described above. Inspired by research, I found my local farmers’ market in Sussex last week. On Friday night we enjoyed a delicious steak alongside gently roasted Jerusalem artichokes with the most beautiful tomatoes on the vine, cucumber and red oak lettuce. On Saturday morning I built this nourishing breakfast bowl: a bed of Greek yoghurt with grated pear and carrot, hemp seed hearts, walnuts and the most luscious raspberries I have ever tasted. The work of a moment and the fuel for a very satisfactory morning. No energy dips, no need for caffeine, no sugar cravings. We will dig deeper into what to eat next time. In the meantime, pick your protein and then adorn your plate with the richest diversity of plants you can find. You will feel much better for it, I promise.
Source: Minich, D.M. (2019) “A review of the science of colorful, plant-based food and practical strategies for “eating the rainbow”, Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism, 2125070.
Caroline is a nutritional therapist and functional medicine practitioner who works one-to-one with clients around the world via Zoom. She is offering Ridley customers ten per cent off her hugely successful “Power of Food” programme. Further details are available at www.midlifemanagement.com. To take advantage of this offer, please email email@example.com by 31st October 2023 quoting “Ridley10”.
Ridley London's new collection of dresses, skirts, tops, jackets and knitwear for Autumn and Winter 2023 is available to purchase online and in Ridley's Barnes store. Celebrate your individuality this season with a unique piece that's customised to flatter in your choice of any of our stunning new printed florals or solid silks or luxurious velvets. Or call us to arrange a virtual fitting:
Ridley London, 82 Church Road, Barnes, London SW13 0DQ T: 01730 823097
Please remember that the information in this blog is not a replacement for working with healthcare professionals who know your specific circumstances. Nothing in this blog is intended to replace or override any medical advice or treatment you may be receiving. If you are on any medication or receiving any medical treatment, please consult a healthcare professional before making any changes to your diet or exercise regime. You must always be mindful of any allergies or intolerances when considering adjustments to your diet. The author disclaims any liability arising directly or indirectly from use of this material by any person.