Spinach is a member of the 'Amaranthaceae-Chenopodiaceae' family of vegetables and known to be a ‘Powerhouse of Nutrients.’ It is healthy and advantageous vegetable, among all the green leafy vegetables. The fresh leaves have a slightly sweet, mild flavor, when cooked it develops into a more intense, acidic green. It has all essential nutrients, vitamins, proteins and anti-oxidants that promote overall good health and well-being. In the following article there are nutritional facts of spinach.
Spinach is a native vegetable of ancient Persia and it was first introduced in the seventh century, and then to Europe in the eleventh century. It is grown in cool weather and is obtainable throughout the year. It has two peak seasons each year, March to May and September to November. The United States and the Netherlands are two of the biggest producers of spinach leaves. It can be categorized into three different varieties. Savoy spinach which is a dark jade color and crinkly in texture, flat or smooth leaf spinach which includes baby spinach; and Semi-Savoy spinach leaves, which is basically a less-curly, less-pungent version of the Savoy and is much easier to clean. As flat leaf spinach has a much milder flavor, it is usually favorite choice for raw dishes. Spinach should be consumed as soon as it is purchased, to get maximum health benefits of it. If it is more refrigerated its nutrient contents will become less. When Fresh spinach is kept in the fridge for more than a week, it loses almost half of its nutrients. So it is best to consume it in the least possible time.
Nutrition value of spinach
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin E
- Vitamin K
- Vitamin B1(thiamine)
- Vitamin B2 (riboflavin)
- Vitamin B6
- Pantothenic Acid
protein is found in the Robisco variety of spinach. It helps to lower blood pressure like an ACE inhibitor.
Calcium and magnesium:
Calcium and magnesium both help to build bone. Magnesium can also lower the blood pressure and is connected to control blood sugar for people with diabetes.
hemoglobin in the body is built by iron, which transports oxygen through the blood to the brain.
Manganese is needed for enzymatic reactions and healthy bone and cartilage.
Vitamin C is important for wound healing and healthy tissue. It works as antioxidant that helps to prevent colon cancer and chronic disease. It is highest is fresh spinach greens and somewhat reduced when cooked.
Vitamin K is important for the formation of bone and blood clotting. A single serving of spinach contains 200 percent of daily suggested value. People who are on blood thinning medications should limit intake to1/2 cup per day to assure the medication works optimally.
Vitamin E decreases the risk of cognitive decline.
Vitamin B2 (riboflavin):
Riboflavin along with magnesium has been connected to reduced migraine incidence.
Folate and betane:
Folate and betane both helps to lower homocysteine, a blood chemical that can damage arteries and increase risk of heart disease.
Co-enzyme Q acts like Vitamins E and K in the body and is usually derived from meats. The only two vegetables contain Co-enzyme Q is spinach and broccoli.
Glutathione acts as an antioxidant, antitoxin and an enzyme cofactor to enhance immune function.
Beta carotene has cardiovascular health benefits. It reduces the risk of cancer, cataracts and also improves immune function.
Kaempferol, a flavanoid connected to reduce the risk of ovarian cancer.
Neoxanthine and neochromes:
Neoxanthine and neochromes are carotenoid compounds having antioxidant activity that target and encourage destruction of prostate cancer cells.
Lutein and zeanthine:
These are the carotenoids compound that protect the eyes from ultra-violet light and decrease the risk of developing macular degeneration. Lutein is fat-soluble and so addition of a little olive oil to a spinach salad or sauted spinach enhances the ability of body to use it.
These flavonoids slow the division of cancer cells for example stomach, breast and skin cancers due to its antioxidant activity.
Health benefits of spinach:
- Vitamin A is very rich in spinach which makes it advantageous for weak eyes. Any strain on the eyes is decreased to a great degree and the eye muscles are made stronger.
- Consumption of spinach helps in curing depression. High levels of folic acid present in spinach. Folic acid deficiency can cause severe depression, irritability, forgetfulness and even insomnia. Spinach help in raising the folic acid level in a natural way. Flavonoid is present in spinach which is a powerful anti-oxidant and also has anti-cancer agents like Carotenoid which prevents the formation of tumors.
- Substances like choline and inositol prevents the thickening and hardening of arteries. Choline and inositol are present in significant amounts to make sure the blood arteries remain healthy.
- Spinach is known to be an anti-aging vegetable. It reverses the age related breakdowns, by making youthful and fresh. It also has a good amount of Vitamin K which helps in the clotting of blood in case of injuries.
- Spinach juice has the ability to decrease pain. The anti-inflammatory properties of greens can help in reducing pains in arthritis and other rheumatic conditions. The alkalinity of this juice dissolves the deposits around the joints to reduce pain and swelling.
- From spinach diabetics can be benefited, as it is known that eating spinach frequently stabilize the blood sugar and prevent it from fluctuating regularly.
- Beta-carotene and ascorbic acid of spinach help to support the body's resistance and protect against infection and ailments.
- Spinach juice is a natural diuretic. Spinach juice mixed with tender coconut water can be given during bladder infections to increase the urine formation.
Video of Spinach Nutrition from youtube:
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