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Top 5 green leafy vegetables needed in your diet!!

Top 5 green leafy vegetables needed in your diet!!
A general rule of thumb when it comes to vegetables is that the darker the green color the more nutrients it contains. As anyone on a training program knows your diet contributes to at least 50% of your results so it’s important to make sure you’re supplying your body with the necessary nutrients to recover and achieve results. Here are the top 5 leafy green vegetables you’re probably not getting enough of.

1) KALE

Kale is slightly rougher and denser than lettuce but also has a much higher nutrient content. It’s very rich in Vitamins A, C, and K, and just one cup of chopped kale contains just over 200% of the daily recommended intake for Vitamin A and 134% of your daily Vitamin C.

Notable minerals found in kale include calcium, potassium, copper, and manganese. At 7 grams of carbs and 2 grams of protein in one cup, kale is dense in nutrients and 34 calories that you won’t regret later on.

2) SPINACH

This dark green made popular by Popeye the Sailor is high in Vitamins A (56%) and K (181%) and also a good source of folate (14%) and Vitamin C (14%). Spinach contains the minerals manganese, magnesium and iron, and one raw cup contains just 1 gram of carbs and 1 gram of protein for a total of 7 calories.

3) COLLARDS

Collards are underestimated in their nutritional content but are right up on the list of nutrient rich greens. One cup of collards contains a whopping amount of Vitamin K (230%), and is also a good source of Vitamins A (48%) and C (21%) with small levels of folate.

Minerals contained in collards are calcium and manganese, and with just 2 grams of carbs and 1 gram of protein for a total of 11 calories.

4) BROCCOLI

Broccoli is a long time staple of North American diets and contains high levels of the Vitamins C (135%), K (116%), and folate (14%) in one cup. It’s mineral content comes from manganese and potassium, and with 6 grams of carbs and 2.6 grams of protein it totals a measly 31 calories.

5) CABBAGE

Cabbage may not be as dense as some of the other greens on this list but still contains high levels of nutrients compared to many other vegetables. Vitamins C (54%), K (85%), and folate (10%) are combined with the minerals manganese and calcium to round out the nutritional value.

In terms of calories, cabbage contains 5 grams of carbs and 1 gram of protein for a total of calories 22.

CONCLUSION

Like most vegetables the above leafy greens are best consumed raw (after washing and preparation of course) to maintain thier nutritional value. Boiling them in water will remove much of the Vitamin C and folate content as they are water soluble. Vitamins A & K are fat soluble so they won’t be affected as much. If you’re looking for an alternative try steaming them to soften them up and changeup the flavor. Regardless of how you prepare them, the most important thing is to consume them regulalry as part of a balanced diet.

April 12, 2013 | Blog, Uncategorized | 0
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