Although we spend our childhood trying to avoid vegetables at every opportunity, we often realise their importance in our diet by time we become adults. After all, they contain a variety of important and essential vitamins, minerals and nutrients that we need in order to survive. With this said, there are some vegetables that aren’t as beneficial, or tasty, when they are eaten raw. Read on as we go over the top five veggies that should always be cooked prior to eating…
Known for its cancer-fighting nutrients, asparagus is a stalky vegetable that isn’t dangerous when eaten raw but isn’t very pleasant. After all, it has a very rough texture due to the plant fibres that it is made from which means that cooking will make it easier to chew and digest. In fact, steaming or sautéing asparagus in olive oil and lemon juice can add a lot of exciting flavours.
With their potassium-rich content, mushrooms can be safely eaten raw but the cooking process allows these nutrients to be absorbed by the body in higher quantities. After all, not consuming enough potassium can lead to a condition known as hypokalaemia. Interestingly, mushrooms are a versatile vegetable which means that they can be fried, roasted, sautéed or steamed.
There are some vegetables that can be eaten raw but are most beneficial when cooked; potatoes are dangerous when they are not cooked prior to consumption because they contain a lot of toxins that can harm the body. In addition to this, they are a starch-filled vegetable which is very difficult for the body to digest in such large quantities when uncooked and can lead to digestive upset. As a result, potatoes should always be boiled, baked or roasted.
Brussel sprouts are known as a cruciferous vegetable and this means that they contain some sugars that can be difficult to digest by the body in a raw state, causing gas, bloating and abdominal pain. As a result, it is advisable to cook sprouts before eating them because the sugars are adapted during the preparation process which makes them easier to digest.
Many people are surprised to find out how much spinach shrinks during the cooking process. In fact, raw spinach contains oxalic acid and whilst it isn’t considered dangerous, it can interfere with the absorption of important nutrients like calcium and iron. Plus, the shrinkage of spinach when it is cooked means that more can be consumed in one sitting and increases the nutrients that are obtained.
Here at The Healthy Living and Fitness, we know how important a healthy diet is as vitamin deficiencies can arise when we do not consume a balanced diet. With this said, it is always advisable to cook certain vegetables before they are eaten because the preparation process allows the body to digest them much easier. To find out which vegetables can be safely eaten raw, get in contact with a member of the Healthy Living and Fitness team today!