The Nutritional and Health Benefits of Integrating Asparagus into Your Diet

Evidence-based research shows that Asparagus is one of the healthiest vegetables in the world, ranking 10th out of 14. Asparagus is a popular vegetable in many parts of the world. It’s incorporated in many dishes including stir-fries, pasta, and frittatas, to name a few. There are healthier, yet delicious alternatives where Asparagus can be used like in stir-fried vegetables, pizza made with fresh vegetables, etc. While commonly available in green, Asparagus also comes in other varieties including purple, green, and white.

Nutritional Benefits of Asparagus

There are numerous nutritional benefits of eating plant diets and Asparagus doesn’t fall short. Asparagus is low in calories but has an excellent profile for bioactive compounds that are highly beneficial to your health. Below are some nutritional values you stand to gain from integrating Asparagus into your diet. This list is not exhaustive as Asparagus is packed with plenty of nutrients.

Vitamin A

Vitamin A is an essential nutrient for the proper functioning of the eye skin and immune system. A serving of one cup (134g) of raw uncooked Asparagus provides you with 52 mcg of vitamin A which is about 6% of the daily value required. 

Vitamin B

Asparagus is packed with a variety of nutrients, e.g., vitamin B, thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2), Niacin (B3), pantothenic acid (B5), and folate (B9). These vitamins help maintain a healthy level of homocysteine in the blood. As homocysteine levels elevate, so does the risk of cardiovascular disease. 

A serving of one cup (134 g) of uncooked Asparagus provides you with 69.68 mcg of folate, which is 17% of the daily value required. The value is even higher when cooked. Folate is critical for preventing folate deficiency anemia as it assists in producing healthy red blood cells. In pregnant women, folate is needed for the development of newborns and helps prevent neural tube defects, such as spina Bifida.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is an important nutrient due to its antioxidant properties, which help scavenge free radicals in your body and protect your cells from damage. A serving of one cup (134 g) of raw uncooked Asparagus provides you with 7.2 mg of vitamin C, which is 7% of your daily requirement. 

Vitamin E

Asparagus is a great source of vitamin E. It is great for your immune system being an antioxidant, and it’s amazing for the skin. A serving of one cup (134 g) of raw uncooked Asparagus offers up to 1.5 mg of vitamin E, which is up to 7% of your daily requirement. 

Health Benefits of Asparagus

Whether boiled, steamed, sauteed, broiled, or pan-roasted, integrating Asparagus into your diet offers a variety of health benefits. Read below to learn more. 

Helps prevent UTI’S

Traditional Chinese medicine has long used the benefits of asparagus in treating urinary tract infections (UTI). Asparagus contains the amino acid asparagine, which is an important diuretic. Diuretics stimulate urine output, and this increased urination helps the urinary system flush out bacteria like E.coli, which lodge in these areas causing UTI. 

Boosts the libido

Asparagus is a natural aphrodisiac in the league of dates, watermelon, and other plant-based diets that help boost libido. Its aphrodisiac effect is due to the presence of vitamin B6, vitamin K folate, and vitamin E. The high level of vitamin E and folate in Asparagus increases blood to the penis just like viagra and other ED drugs. A study carried out using the roots of Asparagus on rats confirmed that the use of Asparagus as an aphrodisiac is no folklore-they do enhance penile erection.

Supports healthy pregnancy

Folate is an essential nutrient commonly prescribed to pregnant women. It (the natural form of folic acid in food) is vital in the early stages of pregnancy as it aids production of red blood cells and DNA, which is needed for the healthy development of babies. The benefit of a plant-based diet incorporating sources of folate like Asparagus is sufficient to protect the fetus against neural tube defects like Spina Bifida. It is important to take 400mg of folic every day before pregnancy and up until the last 12 weeks of pregnancy. Just half a cup of cooked or boiled Asparagus provides a pregnant woman with 34% of the daily requirement. 

Lowers blood pressure

Research has demonstrated health benefits of a plant-based diet, especially vegetables such as asparagus, broccoli, tomatoes, onions, etc., for the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular disease. A major risk factor for cardiovascular diseases such as stroke and heart disease is high blood pressure. Research has also shown that increasing the potassium content of your food and reducing your salt intake can lower high blood pressure. Asparagus is an excellent source of dietary potassium.

Prevents Osteoporosis

Asparagus contains several nutrients that promote bone health including vitamin K, iron, phosphorus, zinc, and calcium. Studies have shown that vitamin K plays an integral role in bone formation, prevents loss of bone mineral, and prevents osteoporosis. One cup of Asparagus provides a significant portion of the daily vitamin K, phosphorus, zinc, and iron requirements for healthy bones.

Detoxifies the liver

Asparagus also has detoxifying properties . Asparagus contains antioxidants such as glutathione and dihydro asparagusic (DHAA), which promote detoxification. Research has shown that DHAA is a powerful detoxifier.