As Popeye knew, spinach is a good source of protein, but it also has a lot of other benefits for anyone trying to lose weight, eat healthy, and stay fit. There are a few key nutrients that spinach is packed with.
Here are the top five health benefits of eating fresh spinach.
Spinach is Low in Calories
If you are interested in losing weight or at least maintaining your current figure, then you should try to be aware of your overall calorie intake. Spinach contains just 23 calories per 100 gram serving. For comparison, 100 grams of chicken breast contains 170 calories. While you might not be so surprised that a vegetable such as spinach has fewer calories than chicken meat, you might not be aware that spinach actually has fewer calories than many other types of vegetables. For instance, broccoli has 34 calories per 100 grams. When comparing it to another healthy green vegetable, you can see just how low in calories spinach really is.
Spinach is Rich in Iron
One serving of spinach contains a third of the recommended daily intake of iron. This vegetable has one of the highest levels of iron per calorie of any food. Iron is an important mineral for the body to use in the production of red blood cells. These are the blood cells that carry oxygen to all parts of the body. Without healthy red blood cells you would feel very weak. This might be one reason why eating spinach gave Popeye a boost of energy in the cartoons.
Spinach is Full of Vitamin C
Usually when you hear about vitamin C you think about oranges or other citrus fruits. But actually many green vegetables are good sources of vitamin C as well. A 100 gram serving of this green leafy vegetable contains 47 percent of your daily vitamin C requirement. As a powerful antioxidant, vitamin C helps protect your body from infection. A healthy body, free from infection, is able to carry out all activities efficiently.
Spinach Has Lots of Vitamin K
A 100 gram serving contains a whopping 402 percent of the recommended daily requirements of vitamin K. This vitamin is important for growing and strengthening healthy bones. In addition, vitamin K plays a role in the production of proteins used for blood clotting. Studies have also shown that vitamin K helps to slow down neuronal damage in patients with Alzheimer’s disease.
Spinach is Loaded with Vitamin A
Spinach also contains over 300 percent of the body’s daily vitamin A requirements. Vitamin A is needed for healthy skin and eyesight. In fact, a deficiency in vitamin A will lead to poor night vision. Consuming foods rich in vitamin A on a regular basis can help prevent certain types of cancer.
If you are looking for a low calorie vegetable that is full of important nutrients, look no further than spinach. Whether you are trying to eat healthy, lose weight, get in shape, or just maintain optimal body performance, spinach should be one of your regular choices.
Fresh spinach can taste great as part of a mixed salad. It’s an easy way to work this nutrient rich vegetable into your regular diet.