Six top reasons to eat asparagus

Nothing says spring like bunches of asparagus for sale at your green grocers. Asparagus, like leafy greens,  is not only a taste treat, it’s packed with a wide assortment of  nutritional goodies.

Here are the top six reasons to enjoy this vegetable:

© Shadow216 | Dreamstime Stock Photos & Stock Free Images

© Shadow216 | Dreamstime Stock Photos & Stock Free Images

•    It’s packed with folate, the B vitamin linked to  a variety of benefits including  heart health perks, protection against certain cancers and certain types of birth defects. It may also defend against cognitive decline.

•    Asparagus supplies potassium, a mineral that’s an important player in maintaining healthy blood pressure readings.

•    It’s a super source of lutein, a carotenoid or pigment that acts as an antioxidant and may protect against macular degeneration, the leading cause of blindness in the elderly.

•    It’s a caloric bargain in terms of its fibre content. One cup of raw asparagus provides almost 3 grams of fibre for under 30 calories. (we should be consuming between 25 to 30 grams a day)

•    Substances contained have anti-inflammatory action. Inflammation is thought to be at the root of many ills including artery disease and certain cancers.

•    Compounds known as saponins in asparagus have been shown to have anti-cancer properties. Recent research published in the Journal of Food Science and Agriculture found that asparagus saponins suppressed breast, colon and pancreatic cancer cells.

What’s your favourite asparagus dish? Please share in the comment section below.

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Categories: Superfoods

Author:Rosie Schwartz

Rosie Schwartz is a Toronto-based consulting dietitian and writer.

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