Originated in Persia, this leafy green vegetable – spinach is a popular term among plant-based eaters. Belonging to the amaranth family, spinach contains a lot of nutrients and antioxidants that could help in alleviating several health problems. Studies have found that eating spinach regularly can help in improving your bone health, eye health, and heart health. According to some recent studies, the antioxidants present in this leafy green vegetable may also help in the prevention of cancer.
Including this super nutritious leafy green vegetable in your plant-based diet is the best decision you will make in this lifetime. Just a 100-gram serving of spinach can provide 2.9 grams of protein, 3.6 grams of carbs, 2.2 grams of fiber, and 0.4 grams of fat. The insoluble fiber present in spinach can help in uplifting your health as a whole. Iron and calcium are two of the main minerals that are contained in spinach. Calcium is very essential for improving bone health and iron helps in creating hemoglobin.
Here are some of the reasons why adding spinach to your plant-based meal is beneficial for you.
Helps In Preventing Cancer
Studies have found that MGDG and SQDG, the two plant compounds found in spinach can help in slowing down the growth of cancer cells. It was found that both these compounds can help slow down cancer growth in the cervix of a person and also help in decreasing the tumor’s size. Many studies conducted on human subjects showed that eating spinach regularly helped in decreasing the risk of prostate cancer and breast cancer. One animal study has found that taking spinach may help in suppressing cancer formation. It also contains high amounts of antioxidants that can help in fighting cancer.
Helps In Fighting Oxidative Stress
We have already discussed that spinach is packed with a lot of antioxidants that could fight oxidative stress and reduce the damage caused by free radical molecules. Free radicals can translate to oxidative stress, which will raise the danger of diabetes and cancer. According to a recent study, consuming spinach regularly can help in fighting oxidative stress. The study looked at eight healthy adults who took spinach daily.
Helps In Managing Diabetes
The antioxidant alpha-lipoic acid present in spinach is proven to be very effective in reducing the glucose levels in your blood and also helps in increasing your insulin sensitivity. This antioxidant can also help in preventing oxidative stress and other changes induced by stress in people with diabetes. Some studies conducted on alpha-lipoic acid have found that it can help in decreasing peripheral neuropathy and autoimmune neuropathy in people with diabetics. Since most studies have looked at the effects of alpha-lipoic acid when it is taken intravenously, more studies are needed to find out how it will benefit when it is taken orally.
Helps In Lowering Blood Pressure
Spinach has a good amount of potassium in it, which is proven to be very effective in lowering blood pressure. Studies have found that potassium could help in reducing the effects of sodium in your body. In addition to that, spinach also contains high amounts of nitrates, which is shown to have the ability to lower blood pressure moderately and reduce the risk of heart disease. Several studies conducted in the past years have concluded that consuming spinach regularly can help in improving your heart health. Also, try to include more potassium-rich food in your plant-based diet.
Helps In Preventing Asthma
Asthma is a respiratory disorder that often develops from a young age. A recent study conducted on 433 children with asthma and 537 children without asthma showed that a higher intake of certain nutrients can help in reducing the risk of developing asthma. Beta-carotene is one of the nutrients and spinach contains a good amount of it. Therefore, try to include more spinach in your plant-based meals if you have asthma.
Helps In Improving Bone Health
According to a recent study, the risk of bone fracture is higher in people with a low amount of vitamin K in their bodies. Vitamin K can help in improving calcium absorption, act as a modifier of bone matrix protein, and also helps in reducing the amount of calcium leaving from the body through urine. Therefore, you need to include more spinach in your vegan meals to reduce the risk of bone fracture because spinach is rich in vitamin K.
Helps In Improving Your Eye Health
Studies have found that spinach is a great source of lutein and zeaxanthin, the carotenoids that give color to many vegetables. These pigments are also present in your eyes in high quantities. They help in protecting your eyes from the damage caused by sunlight. According to some recent studies, lutein and zeaxanthin could also help in preventing severe eye conditions like cataracts. It was also found that these carotenoids could also reverse existing damage to the eyes.