Watercress is a vegetable that is usually used in salads and creams, but its high nutrient content makes it an important food that should be included in the diet on a regular basis, since thanks to its properties it provides incredible health benefits.
For this reason, the following article will explain in detail some of the benefits that watercress provides for health, the properties it possesses, and alternative recipes for its preparation and consumption.
What is cress?
Nasturtium officinale, cardamine nasturtium or baeumerta nasturtium , commonly known as watercress, is a green leafy vegetable that is native to Europe and Central Asia, known to be a widely consumed food in ancient times by people. It is generally used to use in salads and therapeutic drinks.
Important: A study carried out by the Agricultural Research Institute of Chile defines watercress as a food that has characteristics of great interest for health, since it is considered a very nutritious vegetable in Europe due to its vitamins and minerals.
Health benefits of watercress
As mentioned before, watercress is a vegetable that provides incredible benefits for people’s health, which can be of great interest due to the favorable effects it can cause, these being the following:
1. Boosts the immune system
One of the main contributions of watercress to health is to boost the immune system in people, due to the large amount of vitamins A, C, E, D and group B , which help improve the body’s defenses to fight diseases.
Note: An article published by Salus Magazine on nutrients and the immune system explains that vitamins play an essential role in strengthening the body’s defenses, with vitamin C being the most prominent due to its antioxidant function in the body.
2. Reduces the risk of heart disease
The risk of heart disease can be reduced with the consumption of watercress, since this vegetable is a rich source of carotenoid antioxidants , which are lutein, zeaxanthin and beta carotene, which help take care of heart health.
Important: A study carried out by the Argentine Nutrition Society on carotenoids mentions that they are essential compounds for people , that they are present in plants such as watercress and that they act as powerful antioxidants.
3. Improves liver and kidney functions
Watercress is a vegetable that helps improve liver and kidney functions , thanks to the fact that it has a good amount of vitamins B1, B6 and C, which help keep the liver and kidneys in good condition.
In the same way, watercress is a food that has antioxidant properties, protecting these organs from free radicals that damage their health. Likewise, this vegetable is rich in water, which helps to significantly improve its functions.
4. Fights respiratory diseases
Respiratory diseases can be fought simply by including watercress in the diet , since this vegetable is rich in vitamin A and antioxidants, which help protect lung health, preventing diseases such as bronchitis, asthma or cough.
5. Promotes good digestion
Another of the health benefits that watercress provides is to favor our intestine, thus helping to have good digestion. This is because this vegetable is rich in water and fiber , which helps us take care of ourselves inside and keep us satisfied.
6. Protects against oxidative stress
Watercress is one of the foods that have the greatest capacity to neutralize free radicals in the body, because it has antioxidant properties, which help protect and prevent chronic diseases such as cancer or diabetes.
7. Strengthens the bones
Watercress is a prominent food for providing multiple benefits for people, one of these being the strengthening of the bones. This is thanks to the fact that it has a good amount of calcium and vitamin K , which are essential for bone health.
To highlight: A report published on vitamin K by the National Institute of Health of the United States, confirms that this nutrient turns out to be essential for the body, since it helps better blood clotting and to maintain healthy and strong bones.
8. Fights anemia
Anemia is a disease that can be well combated just by consuming watercress, since it is rich in vitamin C. This nutrient is essential to improve the absorption of iron in the body, thus improving the formation of hemoglobin.
Note: A report published by the United States National Institute of Health confirms that vitamin C is a nutrient that helps improve iron absorption, which makes it ideal for fighting anemia by contributing to the formation of hemoglobin.
9. Contributes to weight loss
Today there is a great interest of people to consume foods that contribute to weight loss, one of these being watercress, because it is a vegetable rich in water and fiber that helps maintain a feeling of satiety.
10. Promotes eye, skin and hair health
Finally, watercress promotes eye, skin and hair health in people. This is thanks to the fact that it is a good source of vitamin A , which helps considerably to protect vision due to its antioxidant actions, thus preventing diseases such as cataracts.
Similarly, watercress is rich in vitamin C , this nutrient being essential for the formation of collagen, which helps maintain healthy skin and scalp, making them softer and shinier. In this last process, the vitamin E that this vegetable has also helps .
Watercress is a vegetable that has a variety of very important nutritional properties , which are responsible for providing the aforementioned health benefits to people.
Note: The following information will be based on a study carried out by the Spanish Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, which is solely focused on watercress and its nutritional properties.
Watercress is a very nutritious vegetable, because it has a high nutrient content, the main ones being vitamin A, C, K, E and group B. All of these are very important to keep the body in a healthy state.
The minerals that can be found in watercress are varied, being the most prominent by quantity, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, sodium, potassium, phosphorus and selenium , which have fundamental functions for the human body.
How is watercress consumed?
Once the benefits and properties of watercress have been mentioned, we briefly and in detail share with you an excellent alternative for its preparation and consumption , through a delicious smoothie.
The watercress smoothie is a nutritional drink that has therapeutic effects, being quite ideal for moments of bad indigestion or feverish states. It also turns out to be very effective for food diets that seek the goal of losing weight.
- cress leaves
- Green apple
- Lemon juice
- sweetener to taste
- The first step is to separate the cress leaves from the branches and cut the cucumber into thin slices of 1-2 centimeters, in order to facilitate the blending process.
- Then the apples are cut into slices and the blending process begins by adding all the ingredients to the blender with water.
- Once the blending process has passed, sweetener can be added to taste to enjoy this excellent drink.
- Watercress is a highly nutritious food with therapeutic properties.
- This food provides incredible benefits such as improving the immune system, preventing diseases, strengthening bones, vision, skin and scalp.
- It has a great nutritional composition , since it has vitamins A, C, E, K and group B, as well as essential minerals to improve the health and functioning of the organism.
- Watercress can be consumed in a smoothie, having therapeutic and healthy effects for those who consume it.