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Photo courtesy of Daquella manera

Did you know that microwaving your vegetables saves 90% of their Vitamin C?

Or that steaming or boiling vegetables causes them to lose 22% to 32% of their Vitamin C?

Based on several studies, here are a few things you should know about vegetables:

  • Numerous studies show that people who consume lots of vegetables have lower rates of heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, eye problems and even cancer
  • The latest dietary guidelines call for 5 to 13 servings — that is two and a half to six and a half cups of vegetables a day.
  • Eating raw or plain vegetables are not always the best way to consume them
  • Vegetables are affected by a number of factors before they reach the plate, including where and how they were grown, processed, and stored before being bought.
  • After six months, frozen cherries can lose as much as 50% of their anthocyanins--the healthful compounds found in the pigment of red and blue fruits and vegetables
  • Microwaved and pressure-cooked vegetables retain up to 90 percent of their vitamin C
  • Fresh spinach loses 64% of its vitamin C after cooking
  • Canned peas and carrots lose 85% to 95% of their vitamin C after cooking
  • Fat-soluble compounds like vitamins A, D, E and K and the antioxidant compounds called carotenoids, are less likely to leach out in water
  • Boiling is better for carrots, zucchini and broccoli rather than steaming, frying or serving them raw
  • Frying is the worst cooking method for vegetables
  • Cooking breaks down the thick cell walls of plants, releasing the contents for the body to use. That’s why processed tomato products have higher lycopene, a carotenoid found in tomatoes and other red-pigmented vegetables that is one of the most potent antioxidants content than fresh tomatoes
  • Fat can also improve the taste of vegetables, meaning that people will eat more of them

“Putting on things that make it taste better — spices, a little salt — can enhance your eating experience and make the food taste better, so you’re more likely to eat vegetables more often,” Dr. Clinton, a nutrition researcher and professor of internal medicine in the medical oncology division at Ohio State University , said.

Depending on the cooking method, nutrient content and taste can vary widely but the major lesson here is to eat a variety of vegetables prepared in a variety of ways. Spice up your meals with vegetables, because

After all, it’s about a healthy lifestyle!

© Iowa Avenue

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