Asparagus Health Benefits

What Is Asparagus?

Asparagus is a vegetable which belongs to the family of cabbage and is cultivated and grown for its vitamin rich flower heads. Its green or purple florets are known for many significant and unique phytonutrients that have been corroborated to have ailments preventing and health facilitating features. The scientific name of Asparagus is ‘Brassica Oleracea Var. Italica’ .(*1,5 & 7*)

Asparagus

Asparagus is a distinct tender spear vegetable, when compared to other vegetables like (carrot, cauliflower, broccoli, spinach etc.,) – that comes out from its roots which are beneath the ground.

This spear vegetable is one of the most preferred spring season dishes. It is widely believed that Greeks and Romans from ancient times have treated this vegetable as a very distinguished cuisine. Touted to be the oldest of all the vegetables, Asparagus is traced back to have originated in the coastal areas of East Asia & East Mediterranean.

The scientific name of Asparagus is ‘A.officinalis’. Off late, this vegetable is being cultivated on a wider scale in countries such as America and also in some parts of Europe continent and Australia Continent. Asparagus these days is a major commercial crop across the globe.

A completely grown Asparagus plant reaches approximately about 5 feet in height.

Asparagus is cultivated and harvested for only one time in a year. The average harvest period ranges between 2-3 months.

Health Benefits of Asparagus

Let us now dive deep and catch a bird’s eye view about the distinct health advantages of Asparagus

The following are a few of the health benefits of Asparagus but not limited to,

Popular Low-Calorie Vegetable

The principle health benefit of Asparagus is that – it is a popular low-calorie vegetable. 100 gms fresh and farm Asparagus release a meager 25 calories. (*4,6,8 & 9*)

Eliminates Constipation

In addition to the above stated advantage, the spears of Asparagus consist of right levels of dietary fiber. 100 gms of fresh and farm Asparagus spears provide about 3 gms. Fiber assists in restricting the ill effects of constipation, reduce bad cholesterol levels through tying to it inside intestines and manage blood sugar levels. (*4,6,8 & 9*)

Fights against Colon-Rectal Cancer

Another significant health benefit of Asparagus is -Research indicates that high-fiber diet assists in cutting down colon-rectal cancer vulnerability by stopping toxic compounds present in the food from absorption. (*4,6,8 & 9*)

Cure for Dropsy & Irritable Bowel Syndrome

The shoots of Asparagus are known for long now to have been used in several crucial traditional medicines to cure conditions like dropsy ailment and irritable bowel syndrome ailment. This is considered to be a very significant health vantage of Asparagus. (*4,6,8 & 9*)

Preventer of Potential Cancer and Viral Infections

Fresh and farm asparagus spears are an important source of anti-oxidants such as lutin, zeaxantin, carotens, and cryptoxanthis. In partnership, these flavonoids assist to eliminate dangerous oxidant radicals from the human body and guard it from potential cancer, neuro-degenerative disease ailments and viral infection ailments. (*4,6,8 & 9*)

Orac Value

The total antioxidant strength of Asparagus when measured in terms of Orac is 2152 µmol TE per 100 gms.

Metabolism

The shoots of Asparagus are also high in the B-complex group of vitamins like thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, B vitamin-6 (pyridoxine), and pantothenic acid. These vitamins are quissential for desired cellular enzymatic and metabolic functions. (*4,6,8 & 9*)

Guards from Infectious and pro-inflammatory elements

Fresh and farm grown asparagus consists of reasonable quantities of antioxidant vitamins like C vitamin, A vitamin, and E vitamin. Constant consumption of diet which is rich in the aforesaid vitamins assists the human body obtain resistant capability against infectious elements and scavenge dangerous radicals from inside the human body. (*4,6,8 & 9*)

Cure for Alzheimer ’s disease

Asparagus shoots are a significant source of K vitamin. 100 gms carry about 37% of DRI. As we are aware, K Vitamin has an impactful role to perform in regards to ensuring bone health by facilitating bone formation process. Desired levels of K vitamin in the food we take assist in restricting damage inside the brain and therefore has a crucial role to play in the treatment of patients suffering from the ailment of Alzheimer’s disease ailment. (*4,6,8 & 9*)

Rich Nutrient Attributes

Asparagus is a perfect and ideal source of minerals such as copper and iron. Further, it has limited quantities of several other minerals and electrolytes like Ca, K, Mn and phosphorus. K is a significant part of cell and other fluids that assists in managing healthy heart rate and desired level of blood pressure. This is achieved by negating the ill-effects of sodium.

Mn is used by the human body as a co-feature for the antioxidant enzyme called superoxide dismutase. Copper is essential for the production of red blood cells. Iron helps to promote cellular respiration and formation of red blood cells . (*4,6,8 & 9*)

Negligible Side-Effects

Asparagus by and large is consumed over the world and is well tolerated by all individuals. Therefore allergic reactions are very rare. Ingestion of young shoots may lead to an uncomfortable odour to urine. This is on account of the metabolism of asparagusic acid, which is divided into several sulfur-containing degradation elements like methanethiol, sulfides etc. This situation, nevertheless, is not too dangerous. (*4*)

Nutrition & Vitamins Rich Vegetable

In comparison to the advantages offered by other vegetables like cucumber, the most widely known vantage of consuming Asparagus is they give your body all the essential vitamins which are required in maintaining healthy life-style. This popular fruit provides A vitamin, B vitamin, K vitamin also with magnesium, potassium and CA etc. (Refer to table 1 & 2)

Other Benefits

At times, in spite of the knowledge or experience that we had gained over a period of time, we tend to turn a deaf eye or lend a deaf ear to the same. The same holds true with this vegetable. In spite of huge awareness among all and sundry about the advantages of Asparagus, yet we tend to neglect this vitamin-rich & mineral-rich leafy vegetable. Thanks to the awareness these days, things have changed for the better.

Asparagus are touted to be the best amongst the vegetables and hence it would be prudent on our part to replace some of the other vegetables that we in-take with a few gms of Asparagus as they promote our immune system to maintain a sustained healthy life. Asparagus in the day to come are going to become a very integral part of one’s diet. So, what’s the delay???? Let’s get to the nearest vegetable store and get some Asparagus to reap optimum value of Asparagus.

Table 1 : NUTRITIONAL CONTENT OF ASPARAGUS AT A GLANCE : (*2*)

NUTRITIONAL

ATTRIBUTE

SUB NUTRIENTS
ENERGY
VITAMINS C vitamin E vitamin K vitamin A vitamin Thiamin (B1)

Riboflavin (B2)

Folates (B3)

Pantothenic Acid (B5) &

Niacin

CARBOHYDRATES Sugar Fiber
FAT
PROTEIN
MINERALS CA Copper Iron Magnesium Zinc &

Manganese

ELECTROLYTES Sodium Potassium
PHYTO-NUTRIENTS Carotene Lutene – Zeaxanthin

Table 2 : NUTRITIONAL CONTENT OF ASPARAGUS IN DETAIL – A Bird’s Eye View : (*3*)

NUTRIENT NUTRIENT VALUE (Per 100 gms)
Energy 20001 Calories
Carbohydrates 3.39 gms
Protein 2.21 gms
Fat 0.13 gms
Cholesterol NIL
Dietary Fiber 2.11 gms
Folates 53 µg
Niacin 0.979 mg
Pantothenic Acid 0.275 mg
Pyridoxine 0.092 mg
Riboflavin 0.142 mg
Thiamin 0.144 mg
A vitamin 757 IU
C vitamin 5.8 mg
E vitamin 1.14 mg
K vitamin 41.7 µg
Sodium Mineral 3 mg
Potassium Mineral 203 mg
Calcium Mineral 25 mg
Copper Mineral 0.190 mg
Iron Mineral 1.15 mg
Manganese Mineral 0.159 mg
Magnesium Mineral 15 mg
Zinc Mineral 0.55 mg
Carotene 450 µg
Lutein Zeaxanthin 711 µg

References:

  1. (*1*) – www.health.com/nutrition/asparagus-health-benefits
  2. (*2*) –  www.eatingwell.com/…/health…/5_powerful_health_benefits_of_asparagus_you_pro..
  3. (*3*) – www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/270805.php
  4. (*4*) – www.well-beingsecrets.com/health-benefits-of-asparagus/
  5. (*5*) – https://www.organicfacts.net › Vegetables
  6. (*6*) –  www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=12
  7. (*7*) – www.care2.com/greenliving/7-amazing-health-benefits-of-asparagus.html
  8. (*8*) – foodfacts.mercola.com/asparagus.html
  9. (*9*) – www.motherearthliving.com/Natural-Health/7-health-benefits-of-asparagus