Never thought of adding spinach to your smoothie? However, this recipe could save you from certain heart diseases. Indeed, a study conducted by Edith Cowan University (ECU) revealed thata cup of nitrate-rich vegetables per day could significantly reduce the risk of suffering from heart disease.
Researchers explored the possible link between heavy consumption of vegetables rich in nitrates like the lleafy vegetables and the beetand lower blood pressure. They also found that these people were at lower risk of being diagnosed with heart disease a few years later.
Lower risk of heart attack
In this study, scientists analyzed data from more than 50,000 Danes. Results? They found that lovers of high-nitrate vegetables had about 2.5 mmHg lower systolic blood pressure and 12-26% lower risk of heart disease. “Our results showed that by eating just one cup of raw vegetables (or half a cup of cooked vegetables) high in nitrate every day, people may be able to significantly reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease“said Dr. Catherine Bondonno of the ECU Nutritional Research Institute.
Before specifying that “the greatest reduction in risk concerned peripheral artery disease (26%). (…) But we also found that people had a lower risk of heart attack, stroke and heart failure ”.
One cup of leafy vegetables is enough
Regarding the quantities, no need to eat exclusively leafy vegetables since the optimal quantity would only be one cup a day. There is no additional benefit to eating more of it, as Dr. Bondonno explains: “People don’t need to take supplements to increase their nitrate levels because the study showed that one cup of green vegetables leaves each day is enough to reap the benefits against heart disease. We did not see any other benefits in people who ate higher levels of vegetables rich in nitrates. ”
Finally, if you’re not sure how to eat a cup of these veggies, Dr. Bondonno recommends including a cup of spinach in a smoothie with banana or berries.