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Nutrition

The 5 best vegetables that reduce inflammation and slow aging

Here are some of the best vegetables you can eat to reduce inflammation and slow aging, according to dietitians.

Inflammation can be a confusing topic to discuss. Your body uses inflammation when you suffer an injury or sickness—it’s your body’s miraculous way of healing itself! However, more and more people these days are suffering from chronic inflammation, which is an entirely different story.

Inflammation turns chronic when your body continues to send out inflammatory markers even when you don’t have a specific injury. Over time, this can lead to serious health conditions like arthritis, heart disease, diabetes, or even certain types of cancer.

This type of chronic inflammation is closely related to the aging process, as well. A report published in Aging and Disease says inflammation that is left untreated can ultimately accelerate the aging process and increase the risk of age-related illness.

Fighting and preventing chronic inflammation involves eating a healthy diet and avoiding a sedentary lifestyle. While we can’t prevent inflammation by just eating one type of food, there are certain nutrient-dense foods we can incorporate into our diet to help.

Continue reading to learn about some of the best vegetables you can eat to reduce inflammation and slow aging.

1. Bell peppers

The 5 best vegetables that reduce inflammation and slow aging

Bell peppers are a versatile veggie that are delicious either cooked or eaten raw with your favorite dip. And according to our dietitians, they’re helpful for managing inflammation to slow aging, too!

“Bell peppers are high in vitamin C and vitamin A, which are naturally occurring antioxidants. They are also high in fiber and water, making them a hydrating veggie. Their high levels of antioxidants also make them anti-inflammatory, which means they can help reduce inflammation in the body,” says Dana Ellis Hunnes, PhD, MPH, RD, a registered dietitian and author of Recipe for Survival.

Nutritional value of bell pepper

Key nutrients contained in 100 grams of raw, red bell peppers include: Calories: 31 Water: 92% Protein: 1 gram Carbs: 6 grams Sugar: 4.2 grams Fiber: 2.1 grams Fat: 0.3 grams.

Carbs in bell peppers Bell peppers are mainly composed of carbohydrates – carbs, in 100 grams bell peppers contain 6 grams of carbs.

Carbs in bell peppers are composed mainly of sugars, such as glucose and fructose, this is also the reason why when we eat bell peppers, we will find sweetness.

In addition, the composition of bell peppers also contains a rich content of fiber, accounting for about 2% of fresh weight, very good for health.

Vitamins and Minerals “What vitamins do bell peppers have?” . In fact, bell peppers are rich in vitamin C, with just one bell pepper providing up to 169% of the RDI. Other vitamins and minerals contained in bell peppers include: Vitamin K1, vitamin E, vitamin A, folate and potassium.

Vitamin C: One medium-sized red bell pepper provides 169% of the Reference Daily Intake (RDI), making it one of the most essential sources of nutrients in the diet.

Vitamin B6: Pyridoxine – the most common type of vitamin B6, is a family of nutrients important for the formation of red blood cells.

Vitamin K1: Vitamin K1 is important for blood clotting and bone health.

Vitamin E: This vitamin is classified as a powerful antioxidant, vitamin E is essential for healthy nerves and muscles. The best food sources of this fat-soluble vitamin include: Oils, nuts, seeds, and vegetables.

Vitamin A : Red bell peppers are rich in pro-vitamin A, a precursor to vitamin A (beta carotene), which your body converts to vitamin A.

Potassium : This essential mineral can help improve health Heart.

Folate: Also known as vitamin B9, it is quite abundant in bell peppers. Folate has many important functions and roles in your body. Adequate folate intake is important during pregnancy.

2. Broccoli

The 5 best vegetables that reduce inflammation and slow aging

Broccoli is another extremely nutrient-dense veggie option, so you may want to add it to your next dinner to slow the rate of age-related diseases that are linked to chronic inflammation.

“Broccoli is high sulfurophanes, which are naturally occurring antioxidants that are extremely healthy and anti-inflammatory. Broccoli is also high in calcium, fiber, and contains a fair amount of water, which also contributes to its anti-inflammatory abilities. It also has a lot of plant-based protein in it compared to other vegetables,” says Hunnes.

Broccoli Nutrition Facts

The following nutrition information is provided by the USDA for one cup (91g) of raw, chopped broccoli.

Calories: 31
Fat: 0.3g
Sodium: 30mg
Carbohydrates: 6g
Fiber: 2.4g
Sugars: 1.5g
Protein: 2.5g

Carbs: One cup of raw, chopped broccoli contains only 31 calories, 6 grams of carbohydrates, and very little sugar (1.5 grams). More than a third of the carbohydrates found in broccoli come from fiber (2.4 grams), making it a filling, heart-healthy food choice.

The glycemic index (GI) for broccoli is 10. The glycemic index is an estimate of how a food affects your blood sugar levels. Broccoli is a low GI food, which means that it has a minimal effect on blood sugar levels.

Fat: Broccoli has only a trace amount of fat and is cholesterol-free. It does, however, contain a small amount of omega-3 fatty acids, in the form of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). Consuming two cups of broccoli delivers nearly 0.5 grams of this anti-inflammatory fatty acid.2

Protein: For a vegetable, broccoli has a significant amount of protein, 2.5 grams per one-cup serving. But you still should include other protein sources in your diet to meet your daily needs.

Vitamins and Minerals: Broccoli is bursting with vitamins and minerals. It’s an excellent source of immune-boosting vitamin C, providing over 81mg, or about 135% of your daily needs. It is also an excellent source of vitamin K, important in bone health and wound healing. You’ll consume 116% of your daily recommended intake in a one-cup serving of broccoli. It’s also a very good source of the B vitamin folate, and a good source of vitamin A, manganese, potassium, and other B vitamins.

Minerals in broccoli include manganese, potassium, and phosphorus.

3. Garlic

The 5 best vegetables that reduce inflammation and slow aging

Garlic is not only delicious, but it has a ton of helpful benefits for many different aspects of your health.

“Garlic is one of the most potent anti-inflammatory foods you can eat. It’s loaded with antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins that help boost your immune system and protect against [age-related diseases like] cancer,” says registered dietitian Ronald Smith, RD. “Add it to your diet in small amounts (one clove daily) or use it as a seasoning on food,” he suggests.

Garlic nutrition facts

This nutrition information for one clove of raw garlic (3g) is provided by the USDA.

Calories: 4.5
Fat: 0g
Sodium: 0.5mg
Carbohydrates: 1g
Fiber: 0.1g
Sugars: 0g
Protein: 0.2g
Vitamin C: 0.9mg
Zinc: 0.04mcg

Carbs: The calories in garlic come from carbohydrate, and because the serving size and calories are so low, the carbs in garlic are also very low. There is just one gram of carbs in a clove of garlic.

Fats: There is no fat in garlic.

Protein: Garlic provides no significant protein.

Vitamins and Minerals: Garlic contains several vitamins and minerals, although a single clove doesn’t provide much due to the small serving size. Each clove contains a small amount of vitamin C, zinc, calcium, iron, potassium, magnesium, vitamin E, vitamin K, and manganese, according to the USDA.

Calories: A 3-gram clove of garlic provides almost no calories. You’ll only add four calories to your total intake if you consume the whole clove. Because you are likely to eat so little of the food, garlic calories are not likely to make a noticeable difference in your daily food intake.

4. Onions

The 5 best vegetables that reduce inflammation and slow aging

Onions can add a burst of flavor to your favorite dishes, as well as a burst of helpful nutrients, too!

“Onions are rich in quercetin, an antioxidant compound found in many fruits and vegetables that helps prevent chronic disease by reducing inflammation in the body. In addition to quercetin, onions are also loaded with other beneficial nutrients such as vitamin C, vitamin E, and magnesium. You can enjoy them raw or cooked, just make sure they’re peeled first!” says Smith.

Onion Nutrition Facts

One medium-sized onion (110g) provides 44 calories, 1.2g of protein, 10.3g of carbohydrates, and 0.1g of fat. Onions are a good source of vitamin C, vitamin B6, potassium, folate, and manganese. The following nutrition information is provided by the USDA for a raw onion measuring approximately 2.5 inches in diameter.

Calories: 44
Fat: 0.1g
Sodium: 4.4mg
Carbohydrates: 10.3g
Fiber: 1.9g
Sugars: 4.7g
Protein: 1.2g
Potassium: 161mg
Vitamin C: 8.1mg
Folate: 20.9mcg
Manganese: 0.1mg
Vitamin B6: 0.1mg

Carbs: One medium onion contains just over 10 grams of carbohydrates. Of these, 4.7 grams are sugar and 1.9 grams are fiber. Onions have a low glycemic index rating, between 10 and 15. This means that they have minimal impact on blood sugar levels.

Fats: On their own, onions contain minimal fat. That said, they are often prepared with added fat: sautéed in olive oil or butter, covered in salad dressing, or breaded and deep-fried. All of these can increase the amount of fat in your dish.

Protein: Onions aren’t high in protein at just over 1 gram per serving. If you’re looking to increase your protein intake, use onions to add flavor and nutrients to higher protein food sources, such as eggs or lean meat.

Vitamins and Minerals: Onions provide a variety of nutrients, notably vitamin C, vitamin B6, folate, potassium, and manganese. You’ll also get a little calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, copper, selenium, choline, and other vitamins and minerals when consuming onion.

Calories: A medium-sized onion that is 2.5 inches in diameter (110 grams) supplies around 44 calories. A thin slice of onion (9 grams) provides approximately 3.6 calories while a thick slice (about a quarter-inch thick, or 38 grams) is just over 15 calories.

5. Tomatoes

The 5 best vegetables that reduce inflammation and slow aging

Tomatoes are rich in anti-inflammatory properties, so it may be a good idea to incorporate them into your diet where you can.

“Tomatoes are high in lycopene, which is a powerful antioxidant that may help reduce inflammation in your body. Lycopene is also believed to help protect against heart disease and certain cancers,” says Smith.

Tomato Nutrition Facts

One small (2 2/5″ in diameter) tomato (91g) provides 16 calories, 0.8g of protein, 3.5g of carbohydrates, and 0.2g of fat. Tomatoes are an excellent source of vitamin C, fiber, and vitamin K. The following nutrition information is provided by the USDA.

Calories: 16
Fat: 0.2g
Sodium: 5mg
Carbohydrates: 3.5g
Fiber: 1.1g
Sugars: 2.4g
Protein: 0.8g
Vitamin C: 12.5mg
Vitamin K: 7.2mcg

Carbs: A small tomato (91g) contains 3.5 grams of carbs. Of the carbohydrates, 2.4 grams are from naturally occurring sugars, and 1.1 grams come from fiber. Tomatoes are considered a low glycemic index food.

Fats: Like most fruits and vegetables, tomatoes contain very little fat.

Protein: There is just under 1 gram of protein in a small, fresh tomato.

Vitamins and Minerals: Tomatoes are a great source of potassium and vitamin C. Several beneficial forms of vitamin A are also present in tomatoes, including lutein, zeaxanthin, and lycopene.

Calories: One small tomato (91g) provides 16 calories, 73% of which come from carbs, 18% from protein, and 9% from fat.

Tomatoes are a low-calorie, low-fat hydrating fruit with a low glycemic index. Tomatoes are high in vitamin C, vitamin K, and potassium.

Source: Eatthis/verywellfit!

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