Spring is in the air, and spinach is on the top of my list as one of the most nutritious foods to have right now. This leafy green is an excellent source of phytonutrients, vitamin K, vitamin A, magnesium, folate, manganese, iron, calcium, vitamin C, vitamin B2, potassium, and vitamin B6. It also contains protein, phosphorus, vitamin E, zinc, dietary fibre, and copper, plus selenium, niacin, and omega-3 fatty acids. Loaded with flavonoids which act as antioxidants, it protects the body from free radical damage.
Modern processed food is broken down so quickly that the hormones in the intestines that send satiety signals to the brain and suppress cravings cannot keep up. The green leaf membranes in the spinach slows down the digestion process and gives the intestinal hormones time to be released and communicate to the brain that we are satisfied.
There’s just something about spring. It’s the season that makes change seem like something to celebrate; the time of year when cleaning out cupboards seems almost second nature. The same should go for our bodies. Detoxification is like taking your car in for a yearly service–it helps your body to fire on all cylinders. According to a recently published long-term human study from Lund university in Sweden, there is an extract in spinach containing green leaf membranes called thylakoids which decreases cravings for ‘unhealthy’ foods by up to 95 per cent, and increases weight loss by 43 per cent.
To get the weight loss benefits spinach has to be crushed, filtrated and centrifuged to release the thylakoids from the plant’s cells. “Our analyses show that having a drink containing thylakoids before breakfast reduces cravings and keeps you feeling more satisfied all day”, says Charlotte Erlanson-Albertsson, Professor of Medicine and Physiological Chemistry at Lund University where the study was conducted.