By Sujata Limbu
Cultivated by the Egyptians thousands of years ago, lettuce is one of the oldest members green leafy vegetables family. Today, it can be found in almost all parts of the world, in India, we know this leafy vegetable more commonly as ‘salad patta’ in Hindi. Lettuce is generally used to prepare salads around the world and is best eaten raw. Let us take a look at few of the amazing health benefits that this green leafy vegetable provides to us.
Low Calorie: Lettuce is a vegetable with very low calories and it also contains fiber and cellulose. Fiber helps in filling you instantly and also improves digestion. It also helps to remove the bile salts from our bodies. When our body replaces these salts, it also breaks down cholesterol in this process.
Antioxidant Properties: Lettuce is also known to possess antioxidants with significant free radical-scavenging capabilities. Antioxidants are a wide range of bio-chemicals that are mostly found in our diet which are necessary to have a good health.
Healthy for the heart : Lettuce contains Vitamin C and beta-carotene that work together to prevent the oxidation of cholesterol. Thus including this vegetable in your daily diet can work wonders for people suffering from any heart related problems.
Protein filled: Lettuce contains 20 percent protein and is rich in potassium. Potassium gives a rich supply of nutrients and oxygen by improving circulation. Therefore, a daily intake of lettuce helps in maintaining good muscle strength.
Sleep Inducer: Lettuce leaves contain a white part that is called ‘lactucarium.’ This is known to contain relaxing and sleep inducing properties that is similar to opium but without any side effects. Thus, this leafy vegetable is a natural remedy for people suffering from insomnia.
Hair care: Our hair requires a regular supply of nutrients, vitamins and minerals so that they grow well and remain healthy. Lettuce contains many such nutrients and minerals that stimulates hair growth and nourishes our hair roots.
Skin protection: Lettuce contains Vitamin E and Vitamin C that assist in keeping our skin healthy. It is also known to provide protection against the harmful ultraviolet rays. Lettuce is a rich source of Vitamin A that increases cell turnover, thus revitalizing our skin in this process.
Pregnancy care: Lettuce leaves also contain good amounts of folates. Folates are a part of the co-factors in the enzyme metabolism required for DNA synthesis, thus they play a vital role in the prevention of the neural tube defects that may occur during pregnancy.
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