Nutritional Benefits Of Microgreens
Have you heard the term ‘microgreen’? Well, microgreens are miniature greens. They are tiny in size as they are harvested within 2 to 3 weeks after germination. Scientific research says that microgreens are a super food packed with antioxidants and other essential nutrients. Let us find out how nutritious microgreens are!
Microgreens have more nutrition to offer than mature leaves.
It has been found that young lettuce seedlings that were harvested 7 days after germination contained the highest amount of antioxidants and health promoting compounds when compared to the mature lettuce leaves. Further studies have confirmed that all microgreen leaves have more amount of nutritional densities than the mature counterparts.
Microgreens have abundant vitamin C
The young seedlings (microgreens) are a great source of vitamin C. Vitamin C helps in protecting the body from the harm caused by free radicals. Studies have found that even a microgreen sample with the lowest level of vitamin C had about 20 mg of vitamin C per 100 g and that is the two times the amount present in tomatoes! The highest vitamin C is present in red cabbage with 100 g of it providing 147 mg!!! On the other hand, mature raw cabbage just provides 57 mg of vitamin C (source: USDA). So, the comparisons say it all.
Most of the microgreens are packed with beta-carotene
Carotenoids like beta-carotene reduce the risk of diseases like certain kinds of cancer and eye disease. Carrots enjoy the status of being rich in beta-carotene but even microgreens are a great source of the important nutrient. Actually some microgrens have even more beta-carotene in them than carrots.
Microgreens are a great source of vitamin E
Researchers have found a good amount of vitamin E in the microgreens they have tested. Vitamin E found in microgreens was between 7.9 and 126.8 mg per 100 g. Green daikon radish had the highest amount of tocopherol (vitamin E) when compared to other microgreens. For an adult the recommended vitamin E is 15 mg a day. So, this means that a little bit of daikon radish microgreens would fulfill an adult’s daily need for vitamin E.
Microgreens have vitamin K
Microgreens have vitamin K in them but vitamin K is present in all green plants because it functions as an electron acceptor when chlorophyll absorbs sunlight during photosynthesis. Vitamin K is helpful for humans in promoting normal blood clotting. It also plays an essential role in maintenance of strong and healthy bones. The highest level of the vitamin is found in amaranth microgreens.
Ways of reaping the health benefits of microgreens
If you want to reap the health benefits of micogreens, then you should at them immediately after they are harvested. Microgreens are super foods that are best consumed when fresh. They start losing their nutritional value after harvest rapidly. It would be a good idea to grow your own microgreens at home so that you can decide when to harvest the crop.
You can boost the nutritional value of dishes made with microgreens by using extra virgin olive oil or any other oil that is healthy. In the presence of oil, the bioavailability of fat-soluble nutrients present in microgreens improves.
How did you find the nutritional benefits of microgreens?
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