Cheryl Forberg, R.D., is a James Beard Award-winning chef, the nutritionist for NBC’s The Biggest Loser and a New York Times best-selling author. Her Pumpkin Polenta recipe is reprinted from Positively Ageless: A 28-Day Plan for a Younger, Slimmer, Sexier You (Rodale, 2008). Follow her on at www.facebook.com/cherylforbergrd or twitter at cherylforbergrd
To maintain a healthy balance in your diet, make sure you eat something orange every day. From the burnt orange richness of carrots, yams and pumpkin to the ocher shades of apricots and nectarines, these colorful foods are packed with nutrients and compounds that our bodies need to function properly and stave off disease.
Orange foods take their hue from beta-carotene, a plant substance converted by the human body into Vitamin A, essential for normal growth and development, immune system function, and skin and vision health. Beta-carotene is also a powerful antioxidant shown to help fight cancer and heart-disease. Most people don’t get enough beta-carotene in their diet so it’s important to add orange to the menu daily.