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The Best 5 Dark Greens For Your Health
Think back to those days when you weren’t allowed to have dessert before eating your vegetables. Your mom and dad had the right idea when they wanted you to finish eating your leafy green vegetables.
Let’s consider how Popeye dealt with spinach. When he ate a can of this, he could just about lift an automobile. That was pretty amazing, right? Perhaps the whole concept isn’t so strange.
Your best choices in green vegetables for health are the darkest in color: Swiss chard, romaine lettuce, spinach, kale, and broccoli. Standouts because of their dark green color, these vegetable have abundant antioxidants and are generally high in phytochemicals such as Vitamin C.
If you have been anywhere near a TV since 2010, you’ve probably noticed all the attention antioxidants are getting. Evidence shows that they fortify the immune system and help lower the risk of cancer.
Lots of foods lose their nutritional value after they are cooked. What’s wonderful about the dark green vegetables is that they are readily available at any grocery store and they bring flavor to your meal with very little or no cooking, so their nutritional value isn’t compromised.
Here are some great facts about these powerhouse greens:
Broccoli can be fun for children, as they can pretend they are eating a miniature tree. Actually, the little knobs are tiny florets; by weight they have more than two times the amount of Vitamin C found in an orange.
More about broccoli:
- Broccoli is a prime dietary source of soluble and insoluble fiber. Broccoli not only contains both kinds of necessary fiber, but is is also a green vegetable that has many beneficial nutrients and properties.
- Researchers have demonstrated that indole-3-carbinol – a constituent of broccoli – causes the deactivation of potentially carcinogenic metabolites.
- Broccoli aids in restoring skin that has suffered sun damage, reduces heart disease risk, and provides a boost to the immune system. Its mega helping of calcium promotes healthy growth of bones.
Kale is a leafy green with a slightly bitter taste that packs a large amount of folic acid and potassium. How about kale when for your next stir fry? You might be very pleasantly surprised.
- Kale contains a good amount of folic acid that can improve the condition of your skin, hair, toenails and fingernails.
- Another advantage is the potassium, which assists the breakdown of lactic acid in muscles after strenuous activity, making it a wonder food that can help you avoid sore muscles after exercising.
Swiss chard is a cousin of spinach, but Swiss chard has a more pronounced flavor. Swiss chard contains Vitamin C, K and calcium, and is a good dark green leafy vegetable to steam or add in a salad.
- Vitamin K helps you with better functioning of the eyes and the brain. When you are facing your next major mental task like studying for a final exam or putting together a winning bid for work, snack on some Swiss chard, and proceed confident that your brain has the nutrition required for the effort.
Spinach contains a lot of antioxidants, it has an excellent taste and it is rich in iron, Vitamin C and Vitamin A.
- Spinach is packed with key vitamins and minerals which boost brain function and help grow strong bones and muscles.
- When you make your next salad, substitute the lettuce with clean raw spinach for a bit of variety and a flavor boost to match the nutrient boost.
When you think of dark green vegetables, lettuce may not show up in the picture. But while the paler varieties of lettuce, like iceberg, don’t boast much nutritional value, the darker the leaves, the more of a nutritional punch they pack.
Romaine lettuce is high in antioxidants and fiber, in spite of being mostly water.
If the leaf is an extremely dark green color, the vegetable contains a greater amount of folic acid, which has the potential to ward off heart disease.
We may think of lettuce as an ordinary vegetable, but consider some of its benefits:
- Low in calories, lettuce is a good choice for calorie-limiting diets.
- The magnesium in romaine lettuce breathes new life into muscle tissues, the brain and nerves.
- Lettuce juice is rich in chlorophyll and helps keep hair color bright and natural.
- Lettuce is rich in iron which aids in the formation of red blood cells.
- Lettuce may aid in the treatment of insomnia, acid indigestion, colitis, constipation, gout, and stress in addition to a variety of other diseases.
While you may have been coerced into eating those dark green vegetables as a youngster, you’re now well aware of their vital importance. But today, too, dark green vegetables are crucial to maintaining your health. Try to include some of the dark green vegetables in your diet; you may actually end up liking this type of healthy food!