What are the health benefits of purple and blue foods?

Jamie Johnson
Nutrition & Dietetics
Purple and blue pigment-related flavonoid phytonutrients, referred to as anthocyanins such as those that yield color to blackberries, blueberries, plums, raisins, eggplant, purple cabbage and purple-fleshed potatoes have been shown to have health benefits. 

Benefits from ingesting these blue and purplish pigmented foods that have been demonstrated include protection against liver injuries; significant reduction of blood pressure; improvement of eyesight; strong anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial activities; inhibition of mutations caused by mutagens from cooked food; and suppression of proliferation of human cancer cells. As with other phenolic compounds, anthocyanins are free radical scavengers-meaning they are antioxidants that protect against free radical damage. The consumption of anthocyanins may play a major role in preventing lifestyle-related diseases such as cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular and neurological diseases.

Purple and blue foods may not be as common to find in the average meal as some other colors, but purple and blue foods have many health benefits, including antioxidant and anti-aging benefits. Purple and blue foods may also help with memory, urinary tract health and reduce your cancer risks.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.