Let’s get things moving with something that is as green as it gets. If you want to instantly improve your diet then spinach is one leafy green vegetable that can give you an instant boost. It is something that we highly recommend for its rich nutrient profile. This is one veggie that we love to use in our juicer as well. This is not just for Popeye, as everyone can take advantage of what spinach has to offer. After you see the different possible ways that it can impact the body you will hopefully be more tempted to give it a try.
Spinach contains different vitamins and minerals, which help the body to fight many diseases and health conditions. Properly cooked spinach supplies the body with multiple nutrients that include Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Vitamin A, Manganese, Magnesium, Iron, and Calcium, which are important for bolstering the body’s defense mechanism against ailments. Other vitamins that are found in spinach include Vitamin B2, Vitamin B6, Vitamin E, Vitamin B1 and Vitamin B3. Nutritionists also recommend regular intake of spinach because it nourishes the body with copper, calcium, potassium, phosphorus, zinc, protein, Omega-3 fats, and selenium. The following are five health benefits of spinach.
1. Spinach is an effective antioxidant
The antioxidant properties of spinach depend on the presence of powerful phytonutrients such as carotenoids. These antioxidants prevent the free radicals in the body from destroying important molecules that are crucial to the good health. Some of the crucial carotenoids in the body include beta-carotene and lutein. Spinach contains Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Manganese, and Zinc which have special antioxidant properties in spinach. People who do not eat spinach regularly are more at risk of contacting the various diseases that result in the destruction of the body free radicals. The antioxidant qualities of spinach work well for people of all ages and those recovering from illness.
2. Spinach prevents the inflammation of the digestive tract
Spinach contains special molecules called glycoglycerolipids, which are known to prevent the inflammation of the digestive tract. Inflammation of the digestive tract, which is also referred to as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) results from the reaction of the immune system against the intestines tissue. According to nutritionists, people who include spinach in their diet regularly are less prone to the problem. A diet comprising of spinach and other healthy foods is ideal for people who are highly susceptible to inflammatory bowel disease. However, spinach should be boiled for about one minute to minimize oxalic acid concentration. Overcooking of spinach may compromise its nutritious value and reduce its capacity to fend off diseases.
3. Protection of the blood vessels
Blood vessels often develop problems because of the build-up of oxidative stress. One of the health benefits of spinach is to reduce the occurrence of oxidative stress. At least two research studies have confirmed that eating spinach regularly helps to calm the nerves, which yields a feeling of relaxation for people disturbed by nervous conditions. Moreover, eating of spinach helps to prevent nervous breakdown, particular the type that is generated by the problems of the blood vessels.
4. Reducing the risk of prostrate and ovarian cancer
Some studies have also associated regular consumption of spinach with reduced risk of both prostate and ovarian cancer. According to a study conducted by Harvard Medical Center, spinach contains some special compounds that help in the fight against both types of cancer. Among the highlights of the study was that spinach contains high concentrations of plant metabolites known as flavonoids, which help in the fight against ovarian cancer. Women who include spinach in their diets regularly are 40% less likely to develop ovarian cancer. A separated study concluded that a type of carotenoid called neoxanthin, which is found in spinach, causes the death of prostate cancer cells. Neoxanthin also inhibits the production of the cancerous cells. Therefore, the two studies show that spinach can be a useful deterrent against ovarian cancer and prostate cancer.
5. Spinach Improves Bone Health
Spinach helps in the formation of strong and healthy bones. The concentration of Vitamin K1 in this nutritious vegetable helps to reduce the cells that promote the breaking down of bones. Moreover, spinach contains calcium and magnesium, which are crucial for the formation of strong bones. Nutritionists always recommend spinach to people with bone problems in order to foster growth and strength. Apart from the value of spinach to people with health conditions, the vegetable is useful for highly active individuals who engage in highly strenuous activities. For example, spinach is valuable for sports people and those engaged in physical exercises. Overall, spinach has multiple health benefits that relate to the development of a proper of bone structure. Besides, the minerals in the vegetable are necessary for the formation of strong teeth for all types of people.
In recent years kale has gotten a lot more publicity as it has been trendy with those looking for the next great “superfood”. However, spinach compares well with kale for different minerals and vitamins. It is still a nutrient dense leafy green that should not go overlooked for anyone looking for something that can give them a sure fire way to improve their daily diet.