Spinach Health Benefits: Spinach (Spinacia oleracea) is a leafy vegetable high in nutrition and is very commonly available and consumed. It has very high nutritional values, like being rich in iron. The leafy part of the spinach plant is consumed, and it can either be consumed after cooking or raw as per the individual's taste. Spinach leaves are beneficial in rectifying anemia's problem, and for this purpose, it is advised that it should be consumed daily. Spinach is also useful in maintaining blood sugar levels and can be beneficial for people who have diabetes.
If we talk about Ayurveda, Spinach has properties like Picchila (sticky) that reduce the dryness of hair. Spinach also has Sita (cold) and Ropan (healing) properties that manage sunburn.
The spinach plant grows about a height of 30cm, and it grows annually. The leaves are 2-30cm long and 15cm wide. The leaves grow progressively with larger leaves at the base and smaller leaves higher on the stem.
How did the 'Spinach' word originate?
It was originally adapted from Persian aspānāḵ. It entered the European languages through Latin, which adapted it from Arabic. However, the English word is only recently adapted as of the late 14th century from the espinache.
Historical uses of Spinach
Spinach originated in ancient Persia about 2000 years ago and was later introduced to parts of Asia like India, Ancient China, and Nepal and was known as the "Persian Vegetable."
Spinach originally showed up in England and France in the fourteenth century, presumably through Spain, and picked up normal use since it showed up in late-winter when new nearby vegetables were not available. Spinach is referenced in the main known English cookbook, the Forme of Cury (1390), where it is alluded to as 'spinnedge' or potentially 'spynoches.' During World War I, wine braced with spinach juice was given to harmed French warriors to shorten their dying.
Spinach Benefits: Benefits of using Spinach in Ayurvedic treatment
Spinach has a high amount of water content, which is around 91%. It has 3% protein, 4% carbohydrates, and a very small, almost negligible amount of fat. It is also very rich in Vitamin C, Vitamin K, magnesium, iron, manganese, folate, and Vitamin A.
Additionally, it is also a good source of Vitamin E, Potassium, dietary fiber, Calcium, B vitamins riboflavin, and Vitamin B6.
Spinach has Seeta (cold), Bhedini (laxative), Ruksha (dry), Santarpana (nourishes), and Guru (heavy to digest) properties.
Treating diseases/health problems using Spinach
We will be dealing with the uses of Spinach in treatments methods of different diseases from scientific and Ayurvedic point of view:
The decoction obtained out of the whole plant is used to treat fever and inflammation.
Spinach has Sita (cold) properties that help treat inflammation because it helps in cooling the affected area down. The Kwath made by the whole plant is fit for consumption for the treatment of inflammation.
Spinach is rich in Vitamins that help in accelerating the growth of natural hair.
Spinach has a Picchila (sticky) quality that helps in sebum production, and this sebum keeps the hair moisturized and promotes natural hair growth.
Not enough scientific evidence is available to prove Spinach's role in treating Sunburn.
Spinach has Sita (cold) and Ropan (healing) properties. Sunburns are caused due to an increased amount of Pitta present in the skin and the reduction of Rasa Dhatu. Rasa Dhatu is responsible for giving skin its complexion, glow, and color. Because of these properties, Spinach is used for the treatment of Sun Burn.
Not enough scientific evidence is available to prove Spinach's role in treating Sunburn.
Spinach has Sita property, which controls the hyperacidity that is caused in the stomach. Thus it proves itself to be effective in the treatment of acidity and stomach ache.
Spinach is rich in micro and macronutrient that helps in elevating the stamina and restoring the energy.
Spinach has a Guru (heavy) nature. This nature helps increase Kapha that has a result increase and improves stamina if it is consumed properly.
Forms of Spinach in Ayurveda with Recommended Dosage
Spinach in the Ayurvedic treatment is used in raw, capsule, or juice form. Each of these forms of Spinach can create different types of herbal tonics with a prescribed dosage amount.
If you have not consulted with your doctor regarding the dosage amount for each Spinach form, you can then follow these dosage recommendations:
Spinach Raws: Leaves as per liking
Spinach Capsule: 1-2 capsules, twice a day, preferably after lunch and dinner.
Spinach juice: 1-2 teaspoons twice a day before taking food.
It is recommended to follow the doctor's advice and dosage prescribed if said so.
Types of Ayurvedic Care with Spinach
1) Spinach Raw Leave
Raw leaves are to be taken according to our requirements.
The leaves then have to boil and mixed with any vegetable of your choice.
Spices and Salt can be added as per taste.
2) Spinach Capsule
1-2 capsules of the capsule has to be taken.
It can be consumed with water preferably 1-2 times
3) Spinach Juice
1-2 teaspoon of spinach juice has to be taken.
Water then has to be added to this juice.
It is advised to consume it twice a day before taking food.
Side effects of Spinach
Eating too much spinach hampers the body's ability to absorb minerals due to the presence of Oxalic acid. Spinach is high in fiber, and hence it takes time to get digested, thus leading to stomach pain, fever, or diarrhea.
Spinach should also be avoided if a person has hypersensitive skin.
Precautionary guide while using Spinach?
For Diabetic Patients
Spinach tends to lower blood sugar levels, and hence it is advisable to monitor its consumption.
Moderate Medicine Interaction
Spinach tends to slow the blood clotting, and hence it is advisable to consult a doctor before consuming.
For Pregnant Ladies
Spinach is a safe food to be consumed by women who are pregnant. It is, however, still recommended to ask the concerned doctor before consuming anything.
For Ladies, while Breastfeeding
Spinach is a safe food to be consumed by women who are breastfeeding. It is, however, still recommended to ask the concerned doctor before consuming anything.
For Patients with Kidney related issues
Spinach has the potency to worsen the conditions of the Kidney in an individual, so it is advised to ask a consulting doctor before consuming it.
FAQ's about Spinach
1. What are the constituents of Spinach?
MODERN SCIENCE VIEW: Spinach is called the mines of minerals since it is highly rich in them. It is also a rich source of fibers, iron, essential amino acids, and Vitamin A. There are also phytochemicals present in Spinach, and those are phenolic compounds, flavonoids, and carotenoids.
2. In what forms is Spinach available in the market?
MODERN SCIENCE VIEW: Most commonly, Spinach is available in the raw form as it finds its use in various dishes. Leaves of Spinach are commonly used in various recipes. Spinach, however, is also easily available in the market in the following forms:
a. Spinach Juice.
b. Spinach Capsules
3. Is raw Spinach fit for consumption?
MODERN SCIENCE VIEW: Raw Spinach can be eaten with various combinations and has multiple health benefits. It is consumed alongside cucumbers, strawberries. Mushrooms, carrots, and tomatoes. A form of spinach is prepared with almonds and strawberries and is said to be very healthy. Spinach's Raw form can also be used to season wraps or pasta to increase their nutritional value.
4. Is eating cooked a benefit beneficial for health?
MODERN SCIENCE VIEW: Raw Spinach contains oxalic corrosive, which represses the retention capacity of basic supplements and results in the inadequacy of supplements though cooked Spinach is a decent wellspring of nutrients, calcium, iron, zinc, and different proteins. However, there is no compelling reason to maintain a strategic distance from crude Spinach's utilization since it contains different supplements. Thus, both crude and cooked Spinach is valuable as both contain a decent iron measure and is viewed as useful for wellbeing.
5. Can Spinach cause the darkening of stools?
MODERN SCIENCE VIEW: Spinach is rich in folic acid, iron, and folate, and these are responsible for making the stool block or in dark color. It is common for an iron-rich supplement and is not dangerous and harmful.
6. Does Spinach cause gas?
Spinach has Guru (heavy) property due to which it takes higher to digest, which eventually leads to cramping after eating, experience gas, and bloating.
7. Can Spinach rectify stomach pain?
MODERN SCIENCE VIEW: Not enough scientific evidence is available to prove Spinach's role in treating stomach pain.
AYURVEDIC VIEW: Spinach has Sita property, which controls the hyperacidity that is caused in the stomach. Thus it proves itself to be effective in the treatment of acidity and stomach ache.
8. Is Spinach a blood purifier?
MODERN SCIENCE VIEW: Not enough scientific evidence is available to prove Spinach's role in acting as a Blood purifier.
9. Does Spinach increase your stamina?
MODERN SCIENCE VIEW: Not enough scientific evidence is available to prove Spinach's role in treating stamina.
AYURVEDIC VIEW: Spinach has a Guru(heavy) nature, and consuming it increased both and energy and stamina. It increases the Kapha in the body, thus improving the stamina if consumed daily.
10. What are the health benefits of red spinach?
MODERN SCIENCE VIEW: Spinach is responsible for improving kidney function and cleansing blood, and improving digestion and Bowel movements.
11. Is Spinach beneficial during pregnancy?
MODERN SCIENCE VIEW
Spinach is discovered to be advantageous in the event of pregnancy because of folate(folic corrosive). Folate helps in the advancement of a sound embryo. It likewise helps in the best possible improvement of the mind and spine.