Spinach originated in Persia and then spread to other countries also. This herbaceous edible plant, having dark green leaves has a lot of health benefits. Many people have rightly called spinach as the prince of vegetables. There are various reasons why you should be spinach smart: in purchasing, washing and cooking this vegetable to reap all the health benefits it gives us.
Spinach is the storehouse of calcium, iron and is very rich in anti-oxidants also when it is properly chosen, washed, cut and cooked. Yes, it has abundance pf Vitamins A, B, C and K and is said to be rich in minerals like magnesium, manganese, folic acid, potassium, phosphorus, zinc, niacin, selenium and Omega-3 fatty acids. In addition it has a lot of protein and is alkaline that helps to regulate the body’s functions.
Yes it is best to turn spinach smart and include spinach in your diet to get over inflammatory diseases like rheumatoid arthritis and osteo-arthritis. Besides take spinach juice with carrot juice to ward against deficiency of Vitamin C or bleeding of gums due to excess of refined sugar. The reason for being spinach smart cannot be overlooked in case of age-related eye disorders like mascular degeneration, night blindness and prevention of cataract. Pregnant and lactating mothers do need spinach because of their high content of iron and folic acid.
However the health benefits of spinach has got a lot to do with the choosing of the right type of leaves, washing and cutting them and ultimately preparing them. While choosing spinach leaves it is best that one goes in for dark green crisp leaves that give a fresh and rich fragrance; avoid limp damaged, yellow or spotted leaves and buy smaller leaves for salads. .
Spinach should be washed immediately after buying them and make sure to rinse loose spinach leaves well. Washing and rinsing the leaves play a very vital role as spinach grows on sandy soil. The best and easiest way would be to put the spinach in the sink or a big container with cold water, remove the stem by twisting or cutting the spinach leaves out. It is advisable that the leaves stand for some time in water and the dirt settles down.
Spinach leaves can be dried thoroughly by blotting out the water and wrapping them in paper towels and kept in plastic bags for storage, However it is best eaten on the day it has been purchased, do not store spinach for more than 2 days in a refrigerator. It is best to consume it early too since it oxidizes and becomes toxin soon. It is also best to cook spinach with minimum of water in a pot or a pressure cooker. Never throw away the water but us it in soups and other gravies; the water has all the nutrients of spinach.
To conclude, dear friends do0 be spinach smart to get the benefits of good overall health. Yes, do remember to follow all the hints regarding buying, cleaning, storing and cooking spinach to avoid missing on the golden benefits of these versatile leaves.