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Swap Lettuce for Spinach?

Timeless Health Tip

How do you feel about spinach on your favorite fast food burger instead of lettuce?

Swap Lettuce for Spinach?

Some fitness and health experts would like to see fast food restaurants incorporate more spinach into their offerings in place of lettuce due to its potent nutrition advantages. Spinach is high in vitamin A, folic acid and lutein, which may help protect the eyes from cataracts and macular degeneration, a progressive deterioration of the central portion of the retina resulting in a loss of sharp vision.

Iceberg Lettuce Iceberg lettuce, the most commonly used in restaurants, is very low in these nutrients. Customers of a taco establishment were tested unknowingly and largly agreed they didn't notice the swap of spinach and lettuce at all, but in hamburgers many did. They said they noticed the change in the crunch lettuce has, but as far as flavor went, they did not realize they were eating spinach instead of lettuce.

It's tough to say whether or not fast food restaurants will make this switch, but you can easily do so at home. Parents making the switch who understand that good nutrition starts at home (not in a public school) state their children don't even notice the difference taste-wise.

Popeye Had it Right

Foods rich in folate, a form of vitamin B, help reduce the risk of stroke and heart disease. Eating two servings a day of foods like tomatoes, leafy green vegetables such as spinach and romaine lettuce, pinto, navy or kidney beans, and grain products decreases levels of an amino acid that contributes to the process underlying heart disease and stroke. Try putting spinach on your sandwiches instead of lettuce!

Researchers at Tulane University found that people who consumed at least two servings of folate-rich foods per day had a 20 percent lower risk of stroke and a 13 percent lower risk of cardiovascular disease. Unfortunately, only 32 percent of all American adults are getting enough folate every day.

Did You Know?

The folate in spinach helps cell production. It also contains fiber and Vitamin C for extra help.

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