Green vegetables are the most abundant natural food source that we have around us, second only to industrialized meat and grain productions. But they are also one of the most under appreciated food categories that we are aware of. They are available all round the year and also light on budget. They are not just good for our health but also for our ecology, especially now when climate change is posing an extreme threat to our food security. Researchers all over the globe are encouraging people to cut down their meat consumption and indulge more in locally grown food, the most easily available of which is green vegetables.
They are packed with nutrients of all varieties and are host to some of the most essential minerals needed for our body’s maintenance. Even on an evolutionary timescale, greens have always been part of our diet. We have always easily adapted locally grown green vegetables to our culture, which is evident by eating the same vegetable in different cuisines.
Green vegetables have been found to contain rich amount of phytonutrients. They are full of fibers which makes them suitable for enriching our gut and helping its microbiome to thrive. It also helps in regulating the blood sugar level of our body. They also give a major boost to body’s metabolism by delivering a nutrient dense diet. Their ‘good for gut’ properties help us in having a better digestive health, which can keep off bowel related issues such as bloating and constipation at bay. The anti-oxidants that one is able to assimilate from green vegetables can help in fighting many acute infections and chronic diseases.
Some Health Benefits from Eating Green Vegetables
Good for Hair and Skin: Green vegetables contain many essential vitamins and minerals which help in the regular maintenance of our skin and hair. They are our body’s external protective layer and face many challenges all throughout the day from harsh sunlight to exhausting pollution. If not supplanted with essential vitamins and minerals, our hair can lose its luster and skin its radiance. Greens such as Lettuce are great for our hair and skin.
Maintains Eyesight: Green vegetables contain mineral such as potassium which helps in strengthening tissues present in our eyes. They are also abundant with vitamin A, C and beta carotene, these help in protecting our eyes from damaging sunlight and even help in lowering the chances of cataracts and macular degeneration. Greens such as Kale, Spinach are good for health of our eyes.
Better Digestive Health: Green vegetables can turn out to be an important ingredient to improve our digestion related issues. They can help in overcoming diarrhea, vomiting and nausea which are typically associated with indigestion. Nutrients such as magnesium and potassium help in improving digestive health. Other nutrients present in greens also help in improving the microbiome of digestive tract.
Improves Health of Heart: Green vegetables help in improving the muscles of heart by steadily supplying nutrients such as magnesium. This can help our heart protect itself from stroke or heart attack. Greens also help in getting rid of bad cholesterols that get accumulated in arteries and blood vessels of heart, due to consumption of bad food such as one containing trans-fat.
Improves Iron Level: Green vegetables such as Spinach are a treasure trove for iron needs of our body. Iron deficiency can be slow to detect and can manifest itself in forms of chronic tiredness or sudden fatigues and dizziness. Our blood quality enriches when iron is sufficiently available to body, as it is a key component of hemoglobin. A rich blood supply is essential to carry key nutrients to all parts of the body and to maintain heart’s health. A lack of which can lead to anemia and other diseases.
Boosts Anti-oxidants: Green vegetables can help our body in fighting with free radicals, as these compounds if left on their own can damage vital cells in organs of our body. They can even harm our body by increasing oxidative load which can be tackled by the rich anti-oxidants delivered by consuming green vegetables. These anti-oxidants can help in fighting with cancer cells, and help in stopping mental or bodily decline caused by death of cells.
Aids in Losing Weight: The rich nutrient content along with various vitamins, minerals and dietary fiber that one derives from green vegetables, help the body meet its daily nutrient requirement. This keeps one feeling full for longer and helps them in avoiding unhealthy food choices which are generally processed and packaged. Green vegetables naturally decreases body’s appetite and helps with burning of fat as they are low in calorie but dense in nutrients.
Increase Lifespan: Nutrients such as vitamin K, folate, folic acid and beta-carotene that one easily obtains from green vegetables have been found to contribute in increasing one’s lifespan. Vitamin K improves bone health which is a major cause for debility in old age. By improving one’s immune functions they help in fighting off diseases. They help in lowering risk of disease associated with cancer thereby adding years to one’s life.
Manages Mood: Green vegetables are a major source for folate, a compound that has been found to be helpful in production of neurochemical serotonin. These are compounds that help in lifting up our spirits and feeling of exuberance. The dietary fiber that one receives from greens help in increasing number of good bacterias in our stomach which are also key to serotonin supply. With improved gut performance and better nutritional assimilation, key neurotransmitters maintain their balance and help with our mental wellbeing.
Improves Metabolism: Green vegetables play a key role in enhancing our metabolic performance. This acts as a major boost to burning more fat, feeling fresh and high on energy, better nutrient assimilation by cells in our organs, improved quality of blood circulating all over the body and leading to efficient removal of toxins and elimination of free radicals from our body.
All these qualities greatly improves and enriches our wellbeing and help us in living a healthy and longer life.