Popyeye was onto something! Spinach is a powerhouse food.
We don’t often take our nutrition cues from cartoon characters, but Popeye was onto something. Spinach—high in vitamins B1, B2, B6, C, E, K and folic acid and loaded with iron, magnesium and manganese—is indeed a powerful food. Now, it won’t make your muscles bulge and give you superhuman strength as soon as you eat it, but here’s what it can do for you:
The better to see you …. Spinach is one of the best food sources of lutein, a carotenoid vitamin that promotes eye health, which makes the leafy green essential for healthy eyesight and the prevention of cataracts and macular degeneration. Several studies show the risk of developing age-related macular degeneration, the leading cause of vision loss in people older than 55, is significantly lower in folks who eat a lutein-rich diet. Other studies show higher dietary consumption of lutein is linked to reduced risk of getting cataracts.
Fight cancer … Diets high in dark green vegetables like spinach have been linked to a reduced risk of several types of cancer, including colon, breast and prostate cancers.
… and other diseases. Spinach is an excellent source of antioxidant nutrients known to decrease the risk of blood-vessel related ailments, including high blood pressure and atherosclerosis. And one cup of fresh spinach leaves contains nearly 200 percent of the daily recommended value of vitamin K, important for maintaining bone health.