The World 14 Healthiest Vegetables

The World 14 Healthiest Vegetables
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Vegetables are known for being healthy. Vegetables are high in vitamins, minerals, fibre and calories.

Some vegetables are more nutritious than others and have been shown to reduce inflammation and decrease the risk of developing diseases.

This article will discuss 14 of the most nutritious vegetables and explain why they should be part of your daily diet.

1. Spinach

Vegetables
Vegetables

Because of its high nutrient content, this leafy green is a top choice for being one of the most healthful vegetables.

Raw spinach can provide 56% of your daily vitamin-A needs and your entire daily vitamin-K requirements in just one cup (30g) (1).

The antioxidants in spinach can also help lower the risk of chronic diseases.

One study showed that dark green leafy vegetables such as spinach were high in beta-carotene, lutein and other antioxidants. This has been linked with a lower risk of developing cancer (2).

A 2015 study also found that spinach may positively affect heart health. It may lower blood pressure (3).

Summary

The antioxidants in spinach may help reduce the risk of developing chronic diseases.

2. Carrots

Carrots

Arrows are rich in vitamin A and provide 428% of the daily recommended intake in only one cup (28g) (4).

They are rich in beta-carotene, an antioxidant that gives carrots their bright orange colour. This could be helpful in cancer prevention (5).

One study found that participants had a 5% lower risk of developing prostate cancer if they ate carrots every week (6).

Another study found that carrots could reduce lung cancer risk in smokers. Smokers who did not consume carrots three times more often per week had a greater chance of developing lung cancer than those who consumed carrots at least once per week (7).

Carrots also contain high levels of vitamin C, vitamin K, and potassium.

Summary

Beta-carotene is a particularly high content in carrots, which can be converted into vitamin A by the body. The high antioxidant content of carrots may reduce prostate and lung cancer risk.

3. Broccoli

Broccoli

Broccoli is part of the Cruciferous family.

It’s rich in glucosinolate, a sulphur-containing compound, and sulforaphane (8).

It has been proven to be a powerful antioxidant against cancer.

One animal study showed that sulforaphane could reduce the size of breast cancer cells and inhibit tumour growth in mice (9).

Consuming broccoli can help to prevent other chronic diseases.

An animal study in 2010 found that broccoli sprouts can protect the heart against disease-causing oxidative stresses at significantly lower levels (10).

Broccoli is not only good for preventing disease but also rich in nutrients.

One cup (91g) of raw broccoli contains 116% of your daily vitamin A needs and 135% of your daily vitamin C requirements. It also contains a good deal of folate and manganese (11).

Summary

Broccoli, a cruciferous vegetable, contains sulforaphane. This compound may help prevent cancer growth. Broccoli can help lower the risk of chronic diseases by protecting against oxidative stress.

4. Garlic

Garlic

Garlic is a well-known medicinal plant that has been used for centuries. Its roots can be traced back to Egypt and ancient China (12).

Allicin is the main active compound found in garlic. This plant compound is responsible for many health benefits, (13).

Numerous studies have demonstrated that garlic can regulate blood sugar and promote heart health.

One animal study showed that diabetic rats received either garlic oil or diallyl Trisulfide (a component of garlic). Both garlic compounds caused a decrease and an improvement in insulin sensitivity (14).

Participants with or without heart disease were also fed garlic in another study. The results showed that garlic could decrease total blood cholesterol, triglycerides, and LDL cholesterol. However, HDL cholesterol was increased in both groups (15).

Garlic could also be helpful in the prevention and treatment of cancer. A test-tube study showed that allicin caused cell death in liver cancer cells (16).

Further research is necessary to understand the anticancer potential of garlic.

Summary

Research has shown that garlic may lower blood triglyceride levels, and studies have shown that garlic may also lower blood sugar levels, which could be an anticancer effect. However, more research is necessary.

5. Brussels Sprouts

Brussels-Sprouts

Brussels sprouts, like broccoli, are part of the Cruciferous vegetable family and contain the same plant compounds that promote good health.

Also, Brussels sprouts contain kaempferol (17), an antioxidant that may be especially effective in protecting cells from damage.

An animal study showed that kaempferol protects against free radicals (which can cause oxidative damage to cells) (18).

Consuming Brussels sprouts can also help with detoxification.

One study found that eating Brussels sprouts could increase certain enzymes that control detoxification by 15-30% (19). This could help to lower the risk of developing colorectal carcinoma.

Brussels sprouts are also very nutritious. Each serving contains many vitamins and minerals, such as vitamins K, A, and C. (20).

Summary

Kaempferol is an antioxidant found in Brussels sprouts that may help prevent cell oxidative damage. It also helps to prevent chronic diseases. They can also aid in detoxification.

6. Kale

Kale

Like other leafy greens, Kale is well-known for its health-promoting properties, such as its nutrient density, antioxidant content, and vitamin C.

Raw Kale has 67g of vitamin B, potassium, calcium, and copper.

It also meets your daily vitamin A, C, and K requirements (21).

With its high level of antioxidants, Kale may be good for your heart health.

A 2008 study showed that men with high cholesterol consumed 150ml of kale juice daily for 12 weeks. The study result showed that HDL cholesterol rose by 27%, LDL cholesterol fell by 10%, and antioxidant activity increased (22).
Another study found that kale juice may lower blood pressure and may help to reduce blood sugar and cholesterol (23).

Summary

Kale is rich in vitamins A, C, and K. It also contains antioxidants. Research shows that drinking kale juice can reduce blood pressure and LDL cholesterol and increase HDL cholesterol.

7. Green

green

Peas can be considered a starchy vegetable. Peas are considered starchy vegetables, meaning they contain more carbs and calories than non-starchy vegetables. This can impact blood sugar levels if eaten in large quantities.

Green peas are extremely nutritious.

One cup (160g) of green peas contains 9 grams of fibre, 9g of protein, and 9g of vitamins A, C, and K (24).

Peas are rich in fibre and support digestion health. They increase the beneficial bacteria in your stomach and promote regular bowel movements (25 ).

Peas are also rich in saponins (26), a group known for their anticancer properties.

Saponins are effective in fighting cancer (27).

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Summary

The fibre in green peas is good for your digestive health. These peas also contain saponins, a group of plant compounds that may have anticancer properties.

8. Swiss Chard

Swiss-Chard

Swiss Chard is low-calorie but high in essential vitamins and minerals.

36g of one cup has 7 calories, but 1 gram of fibre, one protein, and lots of vitamins (28).

The ability to prevent diabetes mellitus damage from Swiss Chard is a particular highlight of Swiss Chard.

One animal study showed that chard extract reversed the effects of diabetes by lowering blood sugar and protecting cells from damage caused by disease-causing free radicals (29).

Animal studies also showed that chard extract’s antioxidants could protect the liver from the adverse effects of diabetes (30, 31).

Summary

Animal studies have shown that Swiss Chard may help lower blood sugar levels and protect against diabetes.

9. Ginger

Ginger

Ginger root can be used in many dishes, from vegetable dishes to desserts.

Ginger has been traditionally used to treat motion sickness (32).

Numerous studies have shown that ginger has a positive effect on nausea. A review of 12 studies that included nearly 1,300 women in their pregnancy showed that ginger significantly reduced nausea compared to placebo (33).

Ginger has potent anti-inflammatory properties can help with inflammation-related conditions like arthritis and lupus (34).

One study showed that osteoarthritis patients who received a concentrated ginger extract had less pain in their knees and other symptoms. (35).

Research suggests that ginger may also help treat diabetes.

In 2015, a study was done to determine the effects of ginger supplementation on diabetes. Ginger effectively lowered blood sugar levels after 12 weeks (36).

Summary

Research has shown that ginger can reduce nausea and inflammation. Supplements with ginger may help to lower blood sugar.

10. Asparagus

Asparagus

This spring vegetable is rich in vitamins and minerals, making it a great addition to any diet.

One-third of your daily folate requirements can be met by eating half a cup (90g) of asparagus.

You also get plenty of vitamin K, selenium and thiamin (37).

Folate from asparagus can be used to protect against disease and prevent neural tube congenital disabilities in pregnancy (38,39).

Several test-tube studies have also shown that asparagus may benefit the liver, supporting its metabolism and protecting it from toxicity (40).

Summary

Folate is a particularly high level in asparagus, which could help prevent neural tube congenital disabilities. Test tube studies also showed that asparagus might support liver function and lower the risk of toxicities.

11. Red Cabbage

Red-Cabbage

This vegetable is part of the Cruciferous family and is rich in antioxidants and other health-promoting properties.

Two grams of fibre are found in one cup of raw red cabbage (89g) and 85% of daily vitamin C requirements (41).

Anthocyanins are a rich red cabbage source, contributing to its unique colour and various health benefits.

Rats were given a diet that increased cholesterol and plaque buildup during a 2012 animal experiment. Red cabbage extract was then given to the rats.

Red cabbage extract prevented blood cholesterol from rising and protected the liver and heart ( 42).

Another animal study supported the idea that red cabbage could reduce inflammation in rats fed high-cholesterol diets (43).

Summary

Red cabbage is rich in fibre, vitamin C, and anthocyanins. It may lower blood cholesterol, reduce inflammation, and lower heart and liver disease risk.

12. Sweet Potatoes

Sweet-Potatoe

Sweet potatoes are classified as a root vegetable, distinguished by their bright orange colour, sweet taste, and remarkable health benefits.

A medium sweet potato has 4g fibre and 2g protein (44).

It also contains beta-carotene, a form of vitamin A. One sweet potato can provide 438% of your daily vitamin-A needs.

Beta-carotene has been shown to significantly lower the chance of certain cancers, such as breast and lung cancer (45,46).

Some sweet potatoes may have additional benefits. Quiapo, white sweet potato with anti-diabetic properties, is one example.

One study showed that people with diabetes received 4g of Caiapo daily for 12 weeks. This led to a decrease in blood sugar and blood cholesterol (47).

Summary

Beta-carotene is a high content in sweet potatoes, which could lower the risk of certain types of cancer. White sweet potatoes may also be beneficial in lowering blood sugar and blood cholesterol.

13. Collard Greens

Collard-Greens

Collard greens are very nutritious.

A cup of cooked collard greens (190g) contains 5g fibre, 4g protein, and 27% of your daily calcium requirements (48).

Collard greens and other leafy greens like broccoli and soybeans are among the most potent sources of calcium.

Calcium intake from plants can improve bone health and reduce the risk of developing osteoporosis (49).

Collard greens are highly antioxidants, reducing your chance of developing certain diseases.

A study showed that eating more than one cup of collard greens daily was associated with a 57% lower risk of developing glaucoma (50). This eye condition can cause blindness.

Another study found that high consumption of Brassica vegetables, including collard greens and other leafy greens, could lower the risk of developing prostate cancer (51).

Summary

Collard greens contain high levels of calcium which may reduce your risk of osteoporosis. Regular consumption of collard greens has been linked to a lower risk of developing prostate cancer and glaucoma.

14. Kohlrabi

Kohlrabi

Kohlrabi, also known as the German turnip or turnip cabbage, is a vegetable related to cabbage and can be eaten raw or cooked.

Raw kohlrabi has 5 grams of fiber per cup (135g). It also contains 140% of your daily vitamin C intake (52).

Research has shown that kohlrabi’s antioxidant content is a powerful tool against diabetes and inflammation (53).

One animal study showed that kohlrabi extract could reduce blood sugar levels by 64% in just seven days (54).

Although there are many types of kohlrabi, research shows that red kohlrabi contains nearly twice as many phenolic antioxidants. It also has stronger anti-diabetic or anti-inflammatory properties.

Summary

Kohlrabi is high in vitamin C and fibre.

Vegetables are essential for good health. They provide vital vitamins and minerals, as well as fight diseases.

These vegetables have been extensively researched for their health benefits. However, many other vegetables can be equally beneficial for your health.

To reap the many health benefits of vegetables and get the best nutritional value, ensure you include a variety of vegetables in your daily diet.

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