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Flavenoids are a group of phytonutrients (plant chemicals) that are responsible for the vibrant colors found in fruits and vegetables. They are powerful anti-oxidants, anti-inflammatories and boost the immune system. There are 6,00 different flavenoids but the most well-known include quercetin, kaempferol, catechins and anthocyanidins.

Benefits of flavonoids include:
1) Anti-oxidant-Flavenoids may help transport Vitamin-C which is a powerful anti-oxidant.
2) Anti-inflammatory-Flavenoids block the production of pro-inflammatory enzymes.
3) Cardiovascular- Flavenoids protect LDL cholesterol from oxidative stress which in turn decreases the risk of atherosclerosis. The flavenoids rutin and hesperidin increase the strength and integrity of the blood vessel walls. Quercitin and rutin prevent excessive clumping of platelet cells that can lead to blockage.
4) Supports the nervous system-Flavenoids help prevent oxidative damage and aids in the regeneration of nerves outside of the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord).

Foods high in flavenoids include:
1) Berries
2) Tree fruits-Bananas, citrus, apples, pears, plums, peaches and apricots
3) Nuts and Beans
4) Vegetables particularly red and green ones
5) Fresh spices
6) Beverages-Red wine and all types of tea

Bottom Line-If we eat a whole-foods, plant-based diet rich in a colorful rainbow of foods then we get all the flavenoids and all the health benefits we need to live a long healthy life!

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