Go green and savor these spinach health benefits

Green leafy vegetables – including spinach, kale, collards, mustard and turnip – can pack a powerful nutritional punch. They’re low-carb, raw, gluten-free, vegan, and have no fat and few calories. Spinach is one of the most popular types of greens because of its great taste and versatility. By adding some to your diet, you’ll reap the following spinach health benefits:

A wooden bowl of spinach sitting next to some spinach leaves on a wooden table.

Adding plenty of vitamins and minerals to your diet

Spinach contains the following nutrients:

  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin C
  • Folate
  • Magnesium
  • Vitamin K
  • Iron
  • Manganese
  • Magnesium
  • Potassium
  • Vitamin B2
  • Omega-3 fatty acids
  • Beta carotene
  • Lutein
  • Zeaxanthin

Arms of person stretched out and holding spinach leaves to show spinach health benefits.

Promoting good health

Spinach is considered a “superfood,” even though it may not be as trendy as some others right now. The nutrients in spinach can promote good health in the following ways:

  • Maintaining healthy eyesight
  • Boosting the immune system
  • Promoting heathy cell growth
  • Fighting inflammation
  • Lowering the risk of heart disease
  • Preventing cancer
  • Producing energy
  • Maintaining bone health
  • Helping with digestion
  • Improving blood glucose control in diabetics
  • Maintaining healthy skin and hair
  • Reducing asthma symptoms
  • Preventing certain birth defects

With all these spinach health benefits, it definitely pays to add more of this green to your diet. The following information will help you choose, clean and prepare spinach:

Drainer with wet spinach sitting on top of a white cloth.

How to select and clean spinach

When you’re buying spinach, look for dark leaves that aren’t yellowed, wilted or damaged by insects. Don’t wash it before putting it in the refrigerator as this can make it spoil more quickly.

That said, you’ll need to wash your spinach in cool-to-lukewarm water before preparing it in order to remove any pesticides (unless you buy organic) as well as soil and other debris. Fill a large bowl with water and move the spinach up and down several times. Any soil should stay on the bottom of the bowl, but it may take a few washings with fresh water to remove all debris. After it’s clean, pat the spinach dry with a paper towel or use a salad spinner to dry the greens.

Close-up of a white salad bowl with spinach, avocado and nuts.

How to work more spinach into your diet

Spinach is very versatile since it can be eaten raw or cooked and served in a wide variety of dishes. You can incorporate it into your diet in the following ways:

  • Tossed in a salad with sliced strawberries, slivered almonds, cucumbers, tomatoes, carrots and/or mushrooms
  • Layered in a wrap or sandwich
  • Added to soup, stew or chili
  • Chopped and mixed into smoothies or sauces
  • Steamed for a side dish
  • Stir-fried in a little olive oil
  • Used as a bed for grilled fish
  • Added to scrambled eggs or omelets
  • Added to casseroles
  • Added to pizza sauce

The next time you’re shopping at the grocery store or the farmer’s market, go green by adding some spinach to your cart. You’ll gain many spinach health benefits while enjoying a tasty, versatile veggie. For more information about improving your health, contact BMI of Texas.

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