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Monday May 20, 2024

Top 5 healthiest vegetables that should be part of your diet

Vegetables are a crucial component of a healthy diet since they are a great source of vitamins, minerals, fibre, and antioxidants

By Web Desk
February 21, 2023
Flat-lay photography of vegetable salad on plate.— Pexels
Flat-lay photography of vegetable salad on plate.— Pexels

Maintaining health and avoiding health issues requires us to eat a balanced and nutrient-rich diet. Vegetables are a crucial component of a healthy diet since they are a great source of vitamins, minerals, fibre, and antioxidants.

However, there are thousands of different sorts to pick from, and many don't even come with nutritional information. So how can you determine which vegetables are the healthiest? To help you, we have gathered the top recommendations from nutritionists and credible health information sources.

Following are the top 5 healthiest vegetables, according to various experts and health sites.

1. Spinach

According to Healthline, this is the best vegetable and here's why: "That's because 1 cup (30 grammes) of raw spinach has just 7 calories while still providing 16% of the Daily Value (DV) for vitamin A and 120% of the DV for vitamin K."

Antioxidants, which spinach also offers, may help lower your risk of disease. According to one study, spinach and other dark leafy greens are particularly high in beta-carotene and lutein, two antioxidants linked to a lower risk of cancer. As per a different study quoted by the outlet, spinach may help lower blood pressure, which is good for the heart.

“It also provides an adult's full daily requirement of vitamin K,” Medical News Today writes.

According to PureWow, “Popeye was onto something". Due to its abundance in iron, potassium, magnesium, and carotenoids (such as vitamin A), as well as vitamins K, C, E, and B, spinach is a superfood dark leafy green.

2. Watercress

SciTechDaily raves about this vegetable: “Watercress tops the list of nutrient-dense vegetables per calorie." If you eat this leafy green raw, more of the vitamin C will remain in your body. In addition to vitamin C, watercress is a good source of beta-carotene, a precursor to vitamin A and an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, as well as vitamin K, which is crucial for blood clotting and bone density.

The antioxidants in watercress are much more intriguing. According to one study, the antioxidants in watercress prevent DNA, the cell's genetic material, from being damaged.

With a nutritional density score of 100/100, watercress is rated as the top fruit and vegetable on the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention's Powerhouse Fruits and Vegetables List.

3. Broccoli

This well-known dark green vegetable, much-hated by kids, is a nutrition powerhouse, packed in antioxidants that combat cancer, claims Almanac. It has an inhibitory effect on malignant cells as it is abundant in folate, fibre, calcium, vitamins A and C, and much more.

Broccoli is a cruciferous vegetable high in antioxidants that can guard against harmful medical diseases. According to MindBodyGreen, cruciferous vegetables contain glucosinolates, which are phytochemicals that contain sulphur.

4. Carrots

Ever heard that carrots are good for your eyes? GoodHousekeeping backs that up, saying, “Carrots are full of phytochemicals, such as beta-carotene, that your body converts to vitamin A, which helps with vision — especially at night."

Also, studies link eating foods high in carotenes, such as carrots, with a lower risk of breast cancer. Potassium, vitamin K, and vitamin C are all present in carrots. You can also fulfil your daily fibre requirements by eating carrots.

Higher self-reported intake of carrots was linked to a lower risk of colorectal cancer, according to a study that was published in the journal Nutrients in 2020.

5. Beet Greens

While beets alone are incredibly healthy, don't discard their leafy green tops! In addition to being delicious, WedMD claims they have a number of advantages. The edible leafy tips of beetroots are bursting with vitamin K, which has been associated with a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes. 

Beet greens, the leafy top of the beetroot plant, have greater nutritious worth than the root itself, claims Stacker. They are rich in flavonoids B-carotene and lutein, vitamins A, C, and K, and other nutrients that may aid in cancer prevention. They can be added to salads, baked, or sauteed, and are available all year round at farmer's markets.