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5 Health Benefits of Spinach

Spinach (Spinacia oleracea), native to central Asia, is one of the most versatile leafy green vegetables. It contains vitamins and antioxidants that protect you from chronic diseases and promote brain, heart, and eye health.1

You can enjoy cooked, fresh, frozen, and raw ninetenrapidcare.com spinach. You can add spinach to smoothies, eat it in a chilled salad, steam and sauté it as a side dish, mix it in a stir fry, and even blend it into baked treats like brownies. Read on to learn about spinach’s nutrition and health benefits.

1. Helps Manage Blood Pressure

Spinach is also a source of nitrates, which are naturally occurring chemicals. Nitrates open up blood vessels, which improves blood flow and eases stress on your heart.2

In a study published in 2016, a group of seven women and 11 men consumed four nitrate-rich drinks, including a spinach beverage. The researchers found that the participants’ blood nitrate levels increased after consuming the drinks.3

The spinach drink also lowered blood pressure. Diastolic blood pressure, or the bottom number on a blood pressure reading, indicates the amount of pressure in your arteries between heartbeats. The researchers noted diastolic blood pressure remained low for five hours after consuming the spinach and rocket salad drinks.3

2. Helps Protect Against Diseases

Research has found that compounds in spinach may reduce oxidative stress.1 Oxidative stress is an imbalance of antioxidants and free radicals, or harmful substances that damage your cells. Some evidence suggests that oxidative stress increases the risk of several chronic diseases, including cancer, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes.4

Those compounds also positively influence gene expression, or the “turning on” of certain genes, in inflammation and metabolism. Eating more spinach may protect against chronic diseases.1

3. Is a Source of Antioxidants

Spinach provides antioxidants that help reduce inflammation and protect against diseases. Antioxidants in spinach include kaempferol, quercetin, myricetin, and isorhamnetin, all of which are flavonoids. Those compounds help protect you against cancer, heart disease, and inflammatory diseases.5

4. Is Full of Nutrients

Spinach is full of nutrients, although it’s low in calories. A three-cup portion provides over 300% of the daily value (DV) for vitamin K. The leafy green vegetable also provides over 160% and 40% of the DVs for vitamin A and vitamin C.6 Vitamins K and A support strong bones, and vitamin C helps heal wounds.7

Spinach contains 45% of the DV for folate, a B vitamin that helps form red blood cells and DNA. Spinach also supplies iron, magnesium, potassium, calcium, and small amounts of other B vitamins.6

5. May Support Eye Health

Lutein, an antioxidant in spinach, may reduce the risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD). This eye disease can blur the sharp, central vision essential for reading and driving. AMD is a leading cause of vision loss for people older than 55. Prevention is key since there’s no cure for AMD.8

Research has found that lutein-rich spinach increases macular pigment optical density (MPOD).9 This pigment acts like internal sunglasses to protect your eyes. Decreased MPOD is a risk factor for AMD.10

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