The tender spinach leaves are, in addition to being light, champions in various minerals and vitamins: hence their great preventive and regenerative power
The nutritional power of spinach lies in its high content of vitamins and minerals: 100 grams of this vegetable provide two thirds of the daily needs of vitamin A, practically all of the folic acid, half of the vitamin C and a quarter of the magnesium and iron required daily. In addition, it provides calcium, phosphorus, sulfur, chlorophyll, trace elements, enzymes and fiber.
This combination of nutrients is effective in enhancing hematopoiesis or blood formation, hence spinach is an ideal tonic in anemia. Its proteins (2.8%), although not very abundant, are also more complete than in other vegetables. Spinach juice has been shown to be effective in convalescent states and to improve anemia, accelerate blood replacement after operations and mitigate internal bleeding before being operated on. It also helps regulate digestion and bowel movements.
The presence of secretin in spinach, a substance that accelerates and increases bile, pancreatic, liver and intestinal secretions. Topically, spinach can also alleviate some skin problems: if it is irritated, an ointment made from cooked leaves can be applied to the affected area.
Great preventive power
However, the preventive and therapeutic potential of spinach goes further. Its regular consumption helps prevent certain diseases and improve deficiency states. It is indicated for:
Spinach provides 2.71 mg of iron per 100 g, a proportion that exceeds that of meat. Although iron of vegetable origin is absorbed with greater difficulty than that of animal origin, vitamin C, from both spinach itself and other foods, partly favors its assimilation.
The fiber in spinach prevents the absorption of cholesterol and bile acids, while its antioxidants reduce the oxidation of LDL cholesterol and prevent atherosclerosis.
It helps purify the liver and is laxative.
Three tablespoons of spinach juice a day helps lower blood pressure in prone people.
Being a very light food (22 cal / 100 g) and vitamin, it is very useful in weight loss diets.
Due to its high content of folic acid and its antianemic power, spinach is ideal in pregnancy.
Its antioxidants - it is also rich in vitamin E - protect the dermis from sun damage and the natural aging process.
Lutein and zeaxanthin exert a powerful antioxidant action on the cells of the ocular system and prevent the loss of visual acuity due to macular degeneration.
The crop influences
The correct fertilizer of the crops is essential for the spinach to acquire the nutrients that characterize it. Excessive contributions of phosphate increase the harvest, but decrease some vitamins, potassium, calcium, magnesium and sulfur. The "fast growing" spinach is therefore less nutritious than organically grown spinach.
It should also be borne in mind that, once cooked, the spinach should be eaten within 24 hours, since harmful substances can be generated after a certain time. There are many varieties, which can be eaten raw, boiled, steamed, sautéed, au gratin, on pizza ...
Rosa Guerrero (health)
Montse Tàpia (kitchen)