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Health Benefits of Spinach

health-benefits-of-spinach

Eating and Juicing Spinach Benefits

I regularly enjoy the health benefits of spinach juice and feel great for it. It’s an extremely versatile ingredient when it comes to juicing. I find I can mix it with practically anything and still have a great tasting juice. My favorite way to use spinach is to mix it with the health benefits of beet juice. Spinach and beetroot go great together.

The health benefits of spinach are described below, but first, a little background information on this green superhero.

Spinach originates from the Middle East, specifically Afghanistan and Turkistan. It has been used for thousands of years to help with various illnesses and ailments. Spinach is very high in iron (though not as high as beetroot!) and is also packed with other great nutrients including mineral salts, vitamins, amino acids and a huge pile of fiber.

If you think your diet lacks fiber, try using spinach in a salad (unfortunately, juicing strips the fiber out).

Health Benefits of Spinach


  • Eyes. Studies have demonstrated the power of lutein (a powerful nutrient in spinach) in preventing cataracts. Lutein also slows down aging of the eyes, prevents macular degeneration and helps to promote eye strength. One of the benefits of grapefruit juice is that carrots are also great for our eyes.
  • Prostate cancer. Neoxanthin, a carotenoid present in spinach induces cancer cells to kill themselves and is also converted by the body which prevents cancer cells from multiplying.
  • Ovarian cancer. Studies have found that women with diets packed with kaempferol (a flavonoid in spinach) had a 40% reduction in ovarian cancer.
  • Bone health. Spinach is loaded with vitamin K, a nutrient essential to maintaining bone structure and health. The health benefits of cabbage make it great for the bones also.
  • Heart health. A stack of folate also takes residence within spinach and helps to safely break down chemicals that usually lead to heart attack or stroke if their concentrations get too high.
  • Energy. As I mentioned earlier, spinach is bursting with iron, which builds red blood cells and increases blood flow. This leads to increased oxygen supply to your body which fills you with energy and eliminates fatigue.
  • Blood pressure. Due to a lack of sodium and a surplus of potassium, spinach is thought to lower your blood pressure. Use spinach when juicing for high blood pressure.
  • Anti-inflammatory. One of the health benefits of spinach is its superb role in preventing inflammation. Beta-carotene, vitamin C and vitamin k are all in spinach and they all have anti-inflammatory properties. This makes them effective at reducing symptoms of inflammation, such as arthritis pain.
  • Mental performance. It’s inevitable that our brain function declines with age, but what can we do to slow this process down? One study found that eating 3 servings of green leafy vegetables (such as spinach) could slow the mental decline by up to 40%.

Spinach Nutrition


Image by Simon Howden

Vitamins

  • Vitamin C
  • Niacin
  • Vitamin B1 (thiamine)
  • Vitamin B2 (riboflavin)
  • Vitamin B6
  • Pantothenic Acid
  • Folate
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin K
  • Vitamin E

Minerals

  • Potassium
  • Phosphorus
  • Magnesium
  • Calcium
  • Iron
  • Sodium
  • Zinc
  • Copper
  • Manganese
  • Selenium

Other Uses for Spinach


  • Cooking. Make a salad or cook a stir-fry. The options are almost endless when it comes to cooking with spinach.
  • Tea. Spinach tea is used for increasing diuresis (increased secretion of urine) in kidney and bladder diseases. Mix one teaspoon of crushed spinach leaves with a cup of boiling water. Leave it to infuse for at least 15 minutes then drink and enjoy. Consume two cups per day.
  • Burns. Spinach cataplasms can calm burns. Soak the leaves in boiling olive or soybean oil and fasten with a bandage on the affected area (don’t forget to let the oil cool down first).
  • Hair. Boil half a cup of spinach with half a liter of water. Wait for the mixture to cool down then lightly massage it into the scalp. Wait an hour then wash it out and enjoy your super healthy hair.

Suggested Spinach Juicing Recipes


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