Remember our September article on the health benefits of certain fruits? We hope you’ve begun mixing fruits into your diet and reaping the benefits, and many of you undoubtedly have. Today, we’re going to follow up on that theme by discussing the health benefits of certain vegetables. Together, a diet rich in healthy fruits and vegetables offers a foundation for good health that can last you a lifetime. The key, as with fruits, is knowing which vegetables offer which specific health benefits. Let’s find out.
Celery is rich in fiber, which your digestive system dearly needs to help filter out various toxins in your body. It also contains Vitamin C, which bolsters your immune system against disease and illness. It will additionally aid your cardiovascular health and help reduce high blood pressure when eaten as part of a regular diet. Here’s a tip: for maximum nutrients and tastiness, spread peanut butter onto celery sticks and top it with raisins. The result will be a cold, crunchy, and delicious snack that makes your body very very happy!
Leafy green vegitables provide more vital nutrients than any other type of food, and spinach is one of them. There’s a reason that Popeye the Sailor Man downed a can of spinach before becoming endowed with super-strength. It has to do with the 13 flavonoids, antioxidants, and cancer-fighting properties built into each leaf. Spinach also contains a type of carotenoid that helps fight prostate cancer.
There is a caveat to calling potatoes a healthy food: they are not a very healthy food in the way most people consume them. Potatoes in the form of potato chips and french fries offer little in the way of healthy at all. However, regular, no-frills baked potatoes are an excellent source of fiber, proteins, and potassium, as well as containing surprisingly few calories. Since potatoes are relatively inexpensive and available year round, it makes sense to include them in your diet.
There is a reason that lettuce is the fundamental building block of salads. As a leafy green vegitable, it is high in Vitamin K, and Romain lettuce (the most nutrient-rich kind) packs high amounts of Vitamins A, B1, B2, and C, along with folic acid, magnesium, and chromium. All of these things are essential for healthy functioning, but few of us get as much as we need! Lettuce is a quick and tasty way to begin working them into your diet.
Carrots offer a high volume of antioxidants and more Vitamin A than any other vegetable. It is also famously high in beta-carotene, which helps protect vision (especially night vision) and discourage the development of cataracts. Plus, they’re really crunchy and delicious with dips or dressings! Try eating them with balsamic vinagrette or italian dressing for maximum taste, flavor, and nutrition. You won’t be dissapointed!
Cabbage contains antioxidants that help your cells detoxify themselves and cleanse your body of harmful substances. The antioxidants destroy what are known as “free radicals”, particles that damage the healthy cells in your body and can lead to serious chronic illnesses. Studies have found that those eating the most vegetables (including cabbage) are 25% less likey to develop cancers over their lifetime.
Everyone loves corn on the cob, and with good reason! The summertime vegetable is high in Vitamin B5, fiber, folate, and Vitamin C. As we’ve already discussed, fiber is essential for proper digestive system functioning, while Vitamin C safeguards against illnesses. Corn has also been linked to a lower likelihood of developing lung cancer in people who also smoke, so if you can’t kick the habit, you should at least consider working this vegetable into your diet!