Spinach is a member of the Amaranthaceae family and its scientific name is Spinacia oleracea. It is a green, leafy vegetable that is cheap and affordable for everyone. It is a rich source of minerals, vitamins, pigments, and phytonutrients. All of these together make spinach very beneficial for a number of vital processes. Spinach can be eaten raw as a part of many salads, and it can also be cooked or sauteed down into a reduced form.
Nutritional Values of Spinach
One cup of raw spinach contains:
Spinach is rich in vitamin K which is vital for maintaining bone health. A cup of boiled spinach provides around 1000% of the RDA of vitamin K which lowers and controls the over activation of osteoclasts.
Spinach keeps the body relaxed and completely stress free. It contains tremendous amounts of zinc and magnesium which enable you to sleep better at night, thus making way for more effective healing.
Consuming more of spinach promotes gastrointestinal health. The beta-carotene and vitamin C present in it protect the cells of the body’s colon from the harmful effects of free radicals.
Spinach maintains proper brain functioning specially during old age. Consumption of spinach on a daily basis makes your brain young and active, thus enabling you to think intelligently.
Spinach is rich in Lutein content which prevents thickening of the walls of arteries, thus reducing the risk of heart attack. Besides, spinach contains a high quality nitrite which not only helps in preventing the occurrence of heart attack but also cures the heart diseases associated with fat deposition.
Peptides contained in spinach are effective in lowering blood pressure as they inhibit the angiotensin I-converting enzyme.
Spinach contains Neoxanthin and violaxanthin, the two anti-inflammatory epoxyxanthophylls that regulate inflammation. Thus, it is beneficial in preventing inflammatory diseases such as arthritis, osteoporosis, migraine headaches and asthma.
Vitamin A in spinach protects and strengthens the entry points into the human body, such as mucous membranes, respiratory, urinary and intestinal tracts besides being a key component of lymphocytes (white blood cells) that fight infection. One cup of spinach provides as much as 337% of the RDA of vitamin A.