Health Benefits of Spinach
All dark green vegetables, like spinach, are full of beta-carotene. This is an antioxidant that fights disease in our bodies. Eating a lot of green vegetables has been proven to lower the risk of cataracts, as well as fighting various types of cancers and heart disease.
Spinach in particular is full of phytochemicals. One of these is lutein. Lutein is very important because it prevents macular degeneration, an age-related condition. Furthermore, it contains lipoic acid, which regenerates vitamins C and E. Lipoic acid helps us to produce energy, which means it also has strong properties in terms of regulating our blood sugar levels.
Cooked or Raw Spinach?
Raw spinach is an excellent source of vitamin C, which also works as a strong antioxidant. There is nothing wrong with overcooking spinach, but the longer you cook it, the more of the vitamins you will lose. Spinach is also full of calcium, but the oxalic acid in the vegetable binds with it, so it doesn’t actually get absorbed. There is also a lot of potassium in spinach, which promotes a healthy heart. If you cook it, however, you will lose most of the potassium. One the other hand, by cooking spinach, the nutrients and fibres become concentrated, meaning you will feel much fuller than if you were to eat it raw. As such, in terms of losing weight, spinach is better when cooked.
Selecting and Storing Spinach
There are two types of spinach available for consumption, being smooth and curly-leafed spinach. Smooth is the most popular variant and often used in weight loss diets. This is because it is quite hard to clean the curly variety. Regardless of which type you choose, you should pick spinach with really crisp and dark green leaves. If they are limp or starting to yellow, they are past their prime and much of the nutrients and vitamins will be lost. You can keep fresh, unwashed spinach in your refrigerator for around four days. Washed spinach deteriorates quite quickly, so you should eat it as soon as you have washed it.
Preparing and Serving Spinach
Once you are ready to eat the spinach, make sure you have washed it through and through. There is nothing worse than tucking into a meal and snapping a piece of tooth off because a grain of dirt was left in it. Spinach is incredibly versatile, so you can cook it or serve it raw in a variety of dishes. It is almost entirely free from calories, making it the perfect addition to any weight loss diet. A lot of people enjoy eating warm spinach salads, although you must make sure not to use oils high in saturated fats when cooking it. It is best to simmer the leaves in a little bit of water for a few minutes. Top it with a little bit of lemon juice, some sautéed garlic, a bit of vinegar and perhaps some nutmeg. A spinach salad is very filling, which makes it perfect for weight loss.
Spinach Weight Loss
So how does spinach help you lose weight? Basically, there are no spinach weight loss properties. It doesn’t have any vitamins or minerals that promote weight loss. However, some of the spinach health benefits revolve around our energy production, which means it is beneficial in terms of burning calories. The main spinach health benefits are that it leaves you feeling very full, whilst providing you with a range of essential nutrients and vitamins but almost no calories. There are many fantastic spinach diet recipes that you could follow. Spinach soup is amazing, as is spinach salad and many of the other spinach recipes. As a conclusion, yes, we can call spinach a super food!