The health benefits of spinach
Spinach has an extremely high nutritional value and is rich in antioxidants. It is a good source of vitamins A, B2, C and K, and also contains magnesium, manganese, folate, iron, calcium and potassium.
Other pros are:
- The flavonoids and antioxidants found in spinach, particularly the antioxidant beta-carotene, have been shown in multiple studies to help combat many cancers, including breast, prostate and ovarian cancer. Spinach also boosts eye health and has strong anti-ageing properties.
- A recent study found a bowl of spinach every day increases muscle efficiency. Researchers from the Karolinska Institute in Sweden found participants who consumed 300 grams of spinach a day reduced the amount of oxygen required to power their muscles while exercising by five per cent. The effect was noticable after just three days of spinach consumption.
- Spinach may reduce the risk of skin cancer, according to researchers from the Queensland Institute of Medical Research. Researchers found green leafy vegetables such as spinach and silverbeet are linked with a reduction in the risk of skin cancer, particularly among those with a previous history of the disease.
So is there any reasons not to eat spinach?
- Spinach is high in oxalic acid, which can bind with iron and calcium and cause your body to absorb less of these nutrients. Consuming foods rich in vitamin C, such as tomatoes, capsicum, lemon juice or orange juice along with spinach can aid this absorption. Spinach is high in fibre, but too much of it can cause digestive problems such as bloating, gas and cramping.
- Spinach is also associated with an increased risk of kidney stones, but only in people who are predisposed to the condition.