With new guidance suggesting we should eat 10 fruits and vegetables everyday, it’s more important than ever to fill our shelves with healthy produce.
But an expert has revealed it matters what variety of your favourite fruits and vegetables you buy, as some are much healthier than others.
Botanist James Wong, 35, has compiled the ultimate guide to every type of fruit and vegetable, from the ones we should always pick off the shelf to the ones we should avoid putting in our shopping baskets.
Wong, whose book How To Eat Better is out now, told Reporters that superfoods are not all expensive ingredients such as goji berries and chia seeds, but can include everyday foods such as tomatoes and citrus fruits too.
But he says picking the right variety of these household staples is crucial as some contain much higher numbers of certain health benefits than others, which can help fight off diseases and even help prevent cancers.
His research reveals that baby plum tomatoes contain 30 per cent more health-boosting lycopene than cherry tomatoes, and much more phytonutrients than large beefsteak tomatoes.
Read below for Wong’s ultimate guide to the healthiest varieties of every fruit and vegetable – as well as the produce you should only buy if there’s nothing else available.
Tomato varieties were judged on the number of phytonutrients they contain, which are super healthy chemicals produced by plants that help prevent many diseases.
Highest: Baby plum tomatoes
Lowest: Beefsteak tomatoes
Citrus fruits were judged on the number of antioxidants they contain.
Highest: Blood oranges
Lowest: Lemons and limes
Apples were judged on the number of polyphenols they contain, which are chemicals produced by plants which are anti-bacterial and can also help fight disease.
Grapes were judged on the number of antioxidants they contain.
Highest: Sable seedless (purple/black)
Lowest: Muscat (green)
Onions were judged on the number of polyphenols they contain.
Highest: Red onions
Lowest: White onions
Broccoli types were judged on the number of photonutrients they contain.
Highest: Beneforte broccoli
Lowest: Regular green broccoli
Berries were judged on the number of anthocyanins they contain, which are cells that protect plants from ultra-violet rays and are believed to have health properties.
Salad leaf varieties were judged on the number of nutrients they contain.
Lowest: Iceberg lettuce
Beans were judged on the number of polyphenols they contain.
Highest: Black beans
Lowest: Butter beans
Rice types were judged on its Glycaemic Index score, which tells you if a food raises blood sugar levels slowly, moderately or quickly.
Lowest GI: Black rice
Highest GI: Short-grain rice
Cabbages were judges on the number of glucosinolates they contain, which are compounds found in certain vegetables and are thought to have cancer-fighting abilities.