Spinach is a flowering plant that belongs to the Amaranthaceae family. This green colored edible plant has high roughage and iron content. Spinach also contains a high concentration of phytonutrients like flavonoids and carotenoids. Many kids started eating spinach after watching Popeye, the famous cartoon sailor who ate this green vegetable to gain energy and strength.
History of Spinach
Spinach is native to Persia (Iran) and was cultivated in other countries in southeastern Asia for centuries. The Arab traders brought spinach to India. The king of Nepal sent spinach as a gift to Chinese rulers in the 7th century. Spinach made its debut in Europe in the 14th century. Catherine de Medici, the Queen of France was very fond of this food and had instructed her cooks to include this vegetable in every meal. Even today, many spinach dishes served in France are called “a la Florentine” in honor of Florence, Italy, which is the place to which queen Catherine belonged.
Health Benefits of Spinach
- Lutein present in spinach prevents the occurrence of cataract and strengthens the eye muscles.
- Spinach is loaded with flavonoids that posses antioxidant properties and are useful in preventing various forms of cancer, including prostate cancer.
- Spinach contains high levels of potassium and low sodium content, which makes it a perfect food for people suffering from heart ailments and high blood pressure.
- A bowl of raw spinach contains only about 40 calories and has more fiber than lettuce.
- Spinach contains vitamin K, which strengthens your bone and teeth.
- Magnesium in spinach helps regulate blood sugar levels, thus making it ideal for diabetics.