High in potassium, low in sodium, and containing an amino acid called asparagine, asparagus is a veggie that helps fight water retention. The same trio also helps prevent fatigue by neutralizing ammonia, a substance that builds up in our bodies during the digestive process. Asparagus also contains a special carbohydrate called inulin that isn’t digested, but helps feed the good bacteria in the large intestine. This green veggie is also high in vitamins A and C, potassium, phosphorus, and iron. It’s a good source of fiber, zinc and folic acid, which has been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease.
A relative of cauliflower, these green florets are spot on as a source of iron, vitamins A and C, potassium, fiber, folic acid, and calcium. Broccoli also is known for it’s content of pectin fiber which binds to bile acids and keeps cholesterol from being released into the bloodstream. It’s chromium content helps maintain stable blood-sugar levels, which has been found effective in preventing type-2 diabetes.
One of the world’s oldest vegetables, cabbage is a powerhouse for cancer-fighting nutrients such as vitamin C, fiber, and the two phytochemicals sulforaphane and indoles. These two compounds help detoxify the body, ridding it of cancer-producing substances, including excess estrogen. A number of studies hvae shown that women who eat cabbage regularly reduce their risk of breast cancer by 45 percent. Cabbage also has powerful antibacterial properties as well. It has a high amount of glutamine, an amino acid that nourishes cells that line the stomach and small intestine.
Mostly water, cucumbers help hydrate your body and reduce excess water weight. They are also high in fiber, silica, potassium and magnesium. Cucumbers are also packed with vitamin C which can help calm irritated skin and reduce swelling. Silica is a key component of healthy connective tissue, so cucumbers help build strong muscles, tendons, and bones.
One of the top vegetable sources for vitamin A, kale also provides more nutritional value for fewer calories than almost any other food. 1 cup of kale contains an abundance of manganese, a trace mineral that helps produce energy from protein and carbohydrates. It’s also a top source of calcium, lutein (eye protection), iron, plus vitamins A and C. The high fiber content helps reduce cholesterol and keep blood-sugar levels under control.
A member of the lettuce family, these leaves have a an anticancer compound known as phenylethyl isothiocyanate, or PEITC. Watercress also offers generous amounts of vitamins A and C, calcium, folic acid, potassium, and iron. It boosts kidney efficiency and is a natural diuretic, reducing water retention and bloating.
A relative of the melon and the cucumber, zucchini is a good source of vitamins A, B, and C, potassium, magnesium, and fiber. The magnesium content reduces the risk of heart attack and stroke, while the potassium helps bring down high blood pressure.
A strong source of vitamins A and K, spinach also offers a healthy helping of iron and folate. These little leaves are also a good source of antioxidants like beta-carotene, manganese, zinc and selenium which all combat the onset of osteoporosis and high blood pressure.
9. Bell Peppers
An excellent source of carotenoids, vitamins A, and B, folate and fiber, these peppers are a sweet and crunchy addition to any dish. They are also a top source for vitamin C, the body’s natural protecting vitamin.
10. Green Beans
High in vitamins A and antioxidants like lutein, zea-xanthin, and beta-carotene, green beans are powerful in protecting the body against free radical damage. The zea-xanthin is also effective in preventing age-related macular disease because it provides protective UV light filtering in the eyes. Green beans are also a good source for a healthy amount of minerals like iron, calcium, magnesium, and potassium which are essential for your body’s metabolic processes.