We all know that a balanced diet is incomplete without vegetables. Most of them are nutritional powerhouses comprising of essential vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants while being low in calories. Besides, vegetables do not contain fats and cholesterol and can form a part of the weight loss diet. Vegetables benefit our body. Some vegetables can even help to ward off chronic diseases.
Top 10 Healthiest Vegetables:
All vegetables contain certain health benefits. But, some vegetables contain more nutrients and we need to consume those more. Given below are some of the healthiest vegetables that can really give a nutritional boost to your body.
This cruciferous vegetable is known for its cancer prevention property. According to the “American Journal of Clinical Nutrition”, Broccoli contains polyphenols, which play an important role to prevent degenerative diseases and cancers. Apart from this, it is packed with essential vitamins like Vitamins C, K and folic acid. It also contains minerals like calcium, potassium and iron, which are vital for boosting immunity. The high levels of folic acid in it help to prevent birth defects. You can eat this nutritious veggie raw, stir fried or steamed.
With multitude of health benefits, Kale is regarded as a super food. It contains nutrients like Vitamin A, Vitamin C, calcium, fiber, potassium and manganese. Potassium helps lower blood pressure level, and promotes healthy nerve function and muscle control. Manganese regulates calcium absorption, and strengthens teeth and bones. Kale also possesses amazing detoxifying capabilities along with proven capacity for reducing the risk of ovarian cancer.
Though technically a fruit, tomatoes are used as vegetables. It is an important source of lycopene carotenoids, fiber, and Vitamin C. The antioxidant lycopene can ward off certain types of cancers, including cancers of the stomach, prostate and lungs. Processed or cooked tomatoes are richer in lycopene than their fresh counterparts. Consumption of tomatoes with healthy fats like olive oil facilitates better lycopene absorption. Tomato sauce also possesses the nutritional value of tomatoes. You can use this yummy veggie in sandwiches, pizzas, salads and pasta sauce.
One of the most versatile and widely used vegetables, carrots contain pro-vitamin A carotenes, which help in strengthening the vision. They also contain Vitamin K, Vitamin C, Vitamin B, folate, potassium, and magnesium. They help promote healthy colon and aid the regulation of blood sugar levels in the body. They are considered one of the healthiest juicing vegetables.
This vegetable does not please many, but if we set aside its taste, it is undoubtedly one of the healthiest vegetables found in nature when it comes to nutrition. The high amount of fiber in this vegetable helps in curing constipation. It also contains abundant amounts of calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, carotenoids and Vitamins B, C, K and E. Spinach contains 13 flavonoid compounds. Regular consumption of spinach can help prevent a number of ailments like heart disease, arthritis, osteoporosis and even ovarian and prostate cancer. It also helps promote healthy blood vessels. To get the most of its nutritional value, steam the spinach lightly or consume it raw in salads.
6. Bell Peppers:
The different varieties of bell peppers are a nutritious, attractive and flavorful addition to salads and stir fries. They contain certain elements that help in maintaining a healthy heart. They are good sources of fiber, potassium, manganese and Vitamins A, B, C and K.
7. Onion And Garlic:
Onion and garlic, also known as allium foods, are known for their antibiotic properties. Onions work to lower blood sugar levels and promote cardiovascular health. Regular intake of onions as part of your diet reduces the risk of certain cancers and osteoporosis. Its regular consumption also promotes gastrointestinal health. Both onion and garlic help boost immunity, fight infection and reduce inflammation. Onions can be eaten raw in salads and healthy dips. Onion and garlic are often used in the form of a paste to add taste and flavor to the dishes.
If being overweight is your headache, then eggplant is the perfect veggie for you. Being low in calories and high in copper, potassium and fiber, eggplant or brinjal, is the best veggie for a weight loss diet. Apart from this, it also aids in maintaining a healthy heart. Certain studies have indicated that the enzymes present in eggplant protect the brain cells from getting damaged.
9. Sweet Potatoes:
The health benefits of sweet potatoes can be attributed to their strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Their antioxidant properties help fight and eliminate free radicals from the body. Its regular consumption prevents chronic diseases, such as diabetes and colon cancer. Their anti-inflammatory properties help to reduce the effect of asthma and arthritis. Apart from these, sweet potatoes are rich in carotenoids, fiber, Vitamins A, C and B6 as well as minerals like potassium and iron. They can be baked or used in casseroles, soups and stir fries as well as used raw in salads.
Cucumber is popular for its soothing effect on the skin and is used in skincare products apart from consumption. Cucumbers have other health benefits as well. They aid in maintaining healthy ligaments, bones and muscles as well as help lower blood pressure level. Their hydrating properties provide you a healthy complexion. Cucumbers can be easily incorporated in salads, sandwiches, wraps and burgers to add their nutrition and refreshing flavor.
These are some of the healthiest vegetables, but the list does not end here. Certain other vegetables like cabbage, asparagus, Brussels sprouts, beetroot, Swiss chard, lettuce, parsley, collard greens, beans and peas are quite nutritious and should also form a part of your diet. For optimum health, it is advisable to consume at least 5 servings of vegetables in a day.
So, which are your favorite vegetables? Share with us in the comments section below.