(Credit: Sauda Nabatanzi)
Tired of the never-ending visits to opticians or ophthalmologists, try making red and yellow bell peppers an ubiquitous feature on your daily diet.
In Uganda, they are commonly known as green pepper as the commonest ones on the market are green in colour.
Beatrice Nanyonjo, a vegetable vendor at Nakasero market, says some locals are so used to the green pepper that they mistake the other colored ones to be old or rotting on the market stalls.
Little do there know that these vegetables come in various colours.
“When it comes to these bell peppers, hotel and restaurant owners are my biggest customers who use them in salads and squashes due to their sweet fruity tastes,” adds Nanyonjo.
But away from taste buds, bell peppers are also useful elsewhere: the eyes.
David Olum, an optician in Kansanga, says that if only people knew the nutritious content and health benefits in these bell papers, they would start consuming them daily.
Red and yellow bell peppers are rich in vitamins A, C, and enzymes which help to lower the risk of visual impairment like macular degeneration and cataracts common in old age, according to Olum.
They also protect the human retina, the light-sensitive inner wall of the eye from oxidative damages.
He says these peppers can be eaten either raw or cooked though they need not to be overly cooked otherwise the nutritional benefits can be lost.
Meddie Kigozi, a farmer in Nakifuma, says bell peppers are a tender, warm season vegetable that prefer organic and well drained sandy soils for growth.
Kigozi says from planting, they take 60 to 90 days to mature with the red and yellow ones taking more time so as to mature to full color.
It is for this reason that there are sold at a higher price at the market.
In most local markets, a kilogram is at sh5, 000.