Plant pigments have many roles in nature.
The familiar shades of the rainbow are also seen in everyday life when certain wavelengths of light are absorbed by an object and others are reflected to produce the colors perceived by our eyes. Plants are no exception, and the alluring colors that we all enjoy are due to compounds called pigments that reflect certain wavelengths of light (or colors) to our eyes.
On the plant side, pigments like chlorophyll are not only involved in metabolic functions like photosynthesis, they also control visual cues that attract pollinators and protect plants from harmful UV rays. Pigments help us to identify plants and determine when fruits are ripe. While the nutrients in plants offer a wide range of benefits, plant pigments have also been found to positively affect human health.
|Carotenoids||Red, Orange, Yellow||Reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases, certain cancers, and eye disease plus have antioxidant properties|
|Chlorophyll||Green||Green plants are typically rich in folate and lutein which promote healthy cells and genetic material (DNA and RNA)|
|Anthocyanins||Red, Blue, Purple||Have antidiabetic, anticancer, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial properties plus may reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases|