HBFIT EATS: BREAKING DOWN 6 VEGETABLES AND THEIR BENEFITSMay 10, 2016 1:20 pm
“Eat your veggies” is a phrase that might’ve been lodged in your memory during your childhood. Now it’s time to face the facts: your mama was right! Eating more veggies has boundless benefits for your health. Don’t believe us? Here’s a breakdown of six common vegetables and how they can help you lead a healthier life.
Kale isn’t just a trend. On the contrary, kale is king of healthy greens, with more nutrition than any other vegetable. It’s a high source of major nutrients including Vitamins A and C, calcium, iron and Omega-3 fatty acids. A super antioxidant, kale will help you battle the signs of aging and even help fight against developing cancer. This superfood also helps lower cholesterol, which in turn reduces the risk of heart disease.
Brussels sprouts are delicious, nutritious and they’re making a comeback! And rightfully so, with their nutrient-cocktail of Vitamins C and K, folate, manganese, choline, copper, Omega-3 fatty acids and more. Brussels sprouts also contain glucosinolate, which means they help to activate your cells’ enzyme systems, detoxifying them of cancer-causing substances.
Perhaps Popeye’s diet wasn’t so far off the mark. Another extremely healthy vegetable, spinach is low in fat and cholesterol, and high in valuable nutrients including niacin, zinc, protein and fiber as well as vitamins A, C, E and K. This leafy green is also loaded with flavonoids, which have anti-cancer potential.
What’s even healthier than regular broccoli? The answer is broccoli rabe, broccoli’s slightly more powerful sister. Broccoli rabe (or “rapini”) is jam-packed with potassium, iron and calcium, as well as fiber and vitamins A, C and K. Another nutrient-dense food we’d all be silly to pass over, broccoli rabe possesses an antioxidant called lutein that helps protect our eyes from damage caused by free radicals.
Carrots are another tasty and unsuspecting vegetable worthy of praise. The health benefits of carrots come from their beta-carotene and fiber content, but this root veggie also contains antioxidants that fight free radicals. Carrots are high in Vitamins A, C and K as well as potassium, iron and copper, among other nutrients. And they’re good for your eyesight! Why? The beta-carotene content is converted to Vitamin A in the liver, which then creates rhodopsin in the retina, a purple pigment necessary for night vision.
Okay, so we know that tomatoes are technically a fruit (as strange as it is to accept that), but because of how we cook and consume them, they are sometimes classified as a vegetable. Full of vitamins, fiber, folate and potassium, tomatoes are something you simply can’t forget (even if it means another helping of spaghetti). Naturally low in sodium, saturated fat, cholesterol and calories, tomatoes have major health benefits including boosting your skin’s natural sunscreen, which makes them the perfect dietary addition for summer.
Whether you’re a natural veggie lover or not, you’ll certainly enjoy the incredible health benefits these super vegetables bring to the table.