Lettuce (Lactuva sativa) is an annual plant first cultivated by Egyptians. It has been used in Unani for centuries for treating many ailments. This green leafy vegetable is an excellent source of essential nutrients and antioxidants. It is often used in salads, sandwiches, soups, and wraps.
Lettuce is a rich source of vitamins K and A and possesses numerous impressive health benefits. It may help in controlling inflammation, reducing body weight, promoting brain health, and reducing the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
It is most often grown as a leafy vegetable. It is easily cultivated, and it requires low temperatures keep from flowering.
Though lettuce looks like cabbage, one difference between the two is the water content. Cabbage has less water and is also tougher than lettuce. Lettuce is crunchier. It can also be grilled.Lettuce was originally cultivated in ancient Egypt for the extraction of oil from its seeds. There is evidence of the plant appearing as early as 2680 BC.
The plant also appears in various medieval writings from 1098 to 1179 and is specifically mentioned as a medicinal herb.
Benefits of Letttuce
1. May Fight Inflammation:
Certain proteins in lettuce (or Romaine lettuce), like lipoxygenase, help control inflammation. This has been proven in one Iranian study. According to the study, lettuce has been used in folk medicine to relieve inflammation and osteodynia (pain in the bones).
The vitamins A, E, and K in lettuce may help lower inflammation. You can usually include two cups of raw leafy greens in your diet on a regular basis.
2. Improves Body Metabolism:
Metabolism is a reaction that converts the food we have eaten into the energy which can give our body the power to do something. Subsequently, the nutrients of the food are having a role to support and control the chemical reaction of the metabolism system. In this case, lettuce has a significant role in improving our body metabolism. As it contains iron, magnesium, and potassium, it helps to increase the metabolism of the body.
3. May Aid Weight Loss:
One major reason lettuce can be an ideal weight loss food is its calories. One serving of lettuce contains just 5 calories. Moreover, lettuce helps bridge the micronutrient gap that is otherwise hard to achieve on a low-calorie diet. Lettuce is also low in energy density. This is especially true with Romaine lettuce, which is 95% water and offers 1 gram of fiber per cup.
4. Reduces Risk of Heart Disease:
We must aware and watch the level of bad cholesterol in our body. The high level of bad cholesterol may lead to cardiovascular disease and other dangerous diseases. Even, bad cholesterol often causes heart attacks and strokes. In another hand, studies show that vitamin C and beta-carotene inside lettuce are working together to prevent the oxidation of cholesterol by preventing the artery walls forming as plaques which can block off and break the blood flow. Besides, fiber and potassium in lettuce are also able to lower the cholesterol levels.
5. May Promote Brain Health:
Extreme cases of brain harm can lead to the death of neuronal cells, leading to severe brain diseases like Alzheimer’s. The lettuce extracts, as per numerous studies, had controlled this neuronal cell death due to its role in GSD or glucose/serum deprivation. Lettuce is also rich in dietary nitrate.
6. Prevents Cancer Growth:
Nutrients in lettuce leaf help to control certain type of cancer. Furthermore, research shows, it helps to control the leukemia cells and breast cancer. In the same way, it has shown that consuming lettuce required to kill 50% of leukemia cells. Similarly, vitamin A contained in lettuce also helps in preventing cancer which will assist in dealing the risk of mouth cancer and lung cancer.
7. May Boost Heart Health:
Lettuce is also a rich source of vitamin C, which reduces arterial stiffness and helps in the treatment of cardiovascular disease. It may strengthen arteries and even prevent heart attacks. Including two servings of romaine lettuce in your diet daily can keep your heart healthy.
8. Antimicrobial Properties:
The next benefit you can get from eating lettuce is its ability as antimicrobial properties. It is due to the latex that deforming upon the yeasts. Meanwhile, there are biochemicals that also helping our body to act as antimicrobial. This function goes to the terpenes and cardenolides which are working to defense our body from bad microbes.
9. Removes Toxins:
Removing toxins is one of lettuce’s ability to help our body to be healthy. It is actually caused by minerals inside the lettuce. As a result, it has the ability to keep your acid balance in order. Moreover, by removing toxins in our body, your body only contains the great substances. Thus, there are a lot of benefits that you can get such as greater and healthier body.
10. Helps in curing Anemia:
Lettuce contains rich quantities of iron and adds hemoglobin to the blood. It is used as an excellent tonic food for patients suffering from Anemia. The absorption of this iron, in the body is better and much more than that provided by iron tonics.
11. Beneficial during pregnancy:
Lettuce contains folic acid that helps in preventing Anemia all through pregnancy. Lettuce helps in the prevention of habitual abortions. It is said to influence the secretion and release of progesterone hormone that is responsible for lactation in feeding mothers.
12. Helps in improving sexual disorders:
Lettuce juice is useful in treating several types of sexual disorders. Use of lettuce juice regularly assists in improving fertility rate and increases the sperm count. Intake of fresh lettuce juice improves erectile dysfunction and premature ejaculation in males. It also helps in relaxing sexual passion.
Lettuce leaves have several health and medicinal benefits for humans. But these leaves should be thoroughly washed before being used for preparing salads.
13. Helping in restoring tissue:
Te high content of magnesium in lettuce makes it play an important role in recovering of tissue, nerves, muscles and also brain. It helps in reducing the recovery time of the patients who are suffering from any nerve related ailment. It actually helps in accelerating the recovery time of tired muscles and tissues.
14. Helps in removing blood clots:
Another useful nutritional benefit of Lettuce is that it is a good source of Vitamin K which is believed to be instrumental in removing blood clots.