Asparagus (scientific nameAsperge officinalislisten)) is a perennial flowering plant that was used as food and medicine as early as 3000 BC. Many ancient cultures imbued it with aphrodisiac properties.Today, asparagus is recognized as an excellent source of vitamins, minerals and fiber, with little calories or sodium. Asparagus is tasty and nutritious.
Nutrition facts about asparagus
Half a cup of cooked asparagus (90 g) provides 20 calories, 2.2 g of protein, 3.7 g of carbohydrates and 0.2 g of fat. Asparagus is an excellent source of vitamin K, vitamin A and zinc. The following nutritional information is provided by the USDA.
- Veterinarian:0,2 g
- carbohydrates:3,7 g
- Fiber:1,8 g
- sugars:1,2 g
- Egg white:2,2 g
- Vitamin K: 45,5 mcg
Asparagus is an excellent addition to anylow carbofketogenic diet. Only a small portion of the carbohydrate content comes fromsimple carbohydrates(i.e. sugar), so it has little impact on blood sugar and aSugar level(IG) inferior a 15.
Asparagus also provides a healthy dose.Dietary fiber, the indigestible carbohydrates that help regulate digestion, blood sugar and fat absorption in the body. Most of the asparagus fiber isinsoluble, which means it draws water from the intestines to soften the stool and move it out of the digestive tract.
Asparagus is virtually fat-free, with only small amounts ofpolyunsaturated fatsThese essential fatty acids are important for brain function and cell growth.
Of course, many popular asparagus preparations and toppings (such as butter and hollandaise sauce) add fat and calories. Alternatively, drizzle the spears with a teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil for flavor and more healthy fats.
At 2.2 grams per half-cup serving, asparagus is not high in protein. But it's enough to meet some of your daily nutritional needs.
On average, adults should eat about 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight (or 0.36 grams per pound) per day. This equates to 56 grams per day for the average sedentary male and 46 grams per day for the average sedentary female.
How Protein Fits into a Healthy Diet
vitamins and minerals
Asparagus can form a significant part of your daily nutritional needs. Based on a 2,000-calorie diet, the amount of each vitamin provided in a serving of asparagus as a percentage ofreference daily intake(RDA) are subdivided as follows:
- Vitamin K: 51% of RDA
- Folic acid (vitamin B9):34% to RDI
- Thiamine (vitamin B1): 13% VD
- Riboflavin (vitamin B2): 11% to RDI
Asparagus also makes somethingvitamins,vitamin C,ferro,potassium, Emphosphor.
Asparagus is a low-calorie and also low-fat vegetable. It provides several nutrients, including a large amount of vitamin K and folic acid.
Half a cup of cooked asparagus (90 g) provides 20 calories, of which 57% come from carbohydrates, 36% from protein and 7% from fat. Asparagus is considered a high-volume, low-calorie food.
There are 22 calories in 100 g of asparagus. This is how other green vegetables compare per 100g:
- Green beans: 31 calories
- Broccoli: 34 calories
- Spinach: 24 calories
- Bok choy: 13 calories
- Brussels sprouts: 36 calories
Certain nutrients and compounds in asparagus are believed to provide significant health benefits.
Reduces blood pressure
Asparagus is a source of potassium. Increased intake ofpotassium rich foodsis associated with lower blood pressure because it relaxes artery walls (thus improving circulation) and increases sodium excretion by the kidneys.
Vitamins A and C are also powerfulantioxidantsthat help eliminate free radicals circulating in the blood. This reduces damage to the circulatory system, including the risk of atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) and cardiovascular disease.
Purple asparagus also contains anthocyanins, antioxidants that give the vegetable its vibrant color and exert strong cardioprotective properties.
Asparagus also exerts mild diuretic properties that inherently lower blood pressure by promoting the excretion of excess fluid from the body. 5-point drop in diastolic blood pressure after 10 weeks. It also reduced total cholesterol and fasting glucose levels.
Supports a healthy pregnancy
Most obstetricians recommend that pregnant women consume at least 600 micrograms of folic acid (usually at least part of this is contained in a prenatal vitamin) daily to promote a healthy pregnancy and reduce the risk of neural tube defects such as spina bifida .A half-cup serving of asparagus provides 134 micrograms of folate.
Furthermore, asparagus contains thenon-essential amino acidknown as asparagine, which is necessary for normal brain development and function.
Protects against some chronic diseases
Asparagus is an important source ofinulin, a type of fiber that supports healthy gut bacteria. It does this in part by inhibiting potent bacterial endotoxins, also known aspolysaccharide.
With about 2 to 3 grams of inulin per serving, asparagus can help control certain diseases attributed to excess polysaccharides. These include ulcerative colitis,Crohn's disease,Helicobacter pylori(H. pylori) infection and, to a lesser extent, cystic fibrosis, atherosclerosis, and certain autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis.
Asparagus is rarely involved in the allergy. However, a compound known as tritiane-5-carboxylic acid is found in higher concentrations in young asparagus stems. People who pick or eat these fine stems early in the season may experience contact dermatitis, particularly on the hands or fingers, or contact urticaria, which causes swollen and itchy lips.
Allergy symptoms are usually mild or only last for a few minutes. Call your doctor if symptoms persist or worsen.
As asparagus has a mild diuretic effect, you may not need to eat it while taking the lithium medication. Theoretically, asparagus can reduce the excretion and increase the concentration of lithium in the blood. This can increase the side effects of the drug.
Asparagus is also high on itVitamin K. People taking Coumadin (Warfarin) should consume consistent amounts of this vitamin because of its effect on blood clotting.If you are taking Coumadin, discuss your diet with your doctor and/or nutritionist.
If you notice that your urine takes on a strange smell after eating asparagus, you're not alone. The vegetable contains sulfur-containing amino acids known as asparagus acid, which are broken down during digestion. This produces pungent chemical compounds that are excreted shortly after eating asparagus and for up to a day afterward. Although somewhat unpleasant, sulfur-containing chemicals are not harmful in any way.
You can find asparagus in green, white or even purple varieties. In the United States, the green variety is more common, while white asparagus is found throughout Europe.
White and green asparagus contain about the same amount of calories,carbohydrates, and fiber per serving. The difference is that white asparagus is covered in dirt when it starts to sprout. Since it is not exposed to light, it does not producechlorophyll, a beneficial potentialphytochemistry. White asparagus also contains slightly less vitamin C.
White asparagus is generally thicker and softer than the green variety. It also has a slightly nutty flavor and is less prone to stickiness than its green cousin.
Asparagus can also be purchased frozen and canned. Frozen vegetables retain the same nutrients as fresh varieties. Canned versions often do this too, but often contain added sodium. To reduce salt intake, wash canned vegetables or beans before eating.
when is better
You can enjoy asparagus all year round as it has become a common staple in most fresh produce markets. Still, peak season is around April and May, so enjoy the best and tenderest spears in the spring.
When selecting fresh asparagus, choose stems with a tightly closed bud. Stems should be rich in color, firm and plump and straight looking. Avoid mushy, mushy, spotted, or dull-colored asparagus.
Food storage and safety
Fresh asparagus can dry out quickly, so it's important to store it properly to keep it fresh. To extend shelf life and prevent food waste:
- Keep the asparagus bundle in a rubber band. The stems should only be washed before cooking.
- Cut an inch from the bottom of the stems.
- Wrap the ends in a damp paper towel.
- Place them in a container of water (about an inch deep) and store in the refrigerator.
How to prepare
Asparagus can be steamed, boiled, fried, grilled or thinly sliced and eaten raw in salads. It may be necessary to peel thicker late-season stems before cooking. Break off the woody end of the stem before eating or cooking.
Cook the asparagus just long enough to retain its bright green color. When pea soup starts to turn green, it's probably overcooked and mushy. Overcooked asparagus loses some of its nutrients and health benefits (and the taste and texture can be off-putting, too).
|Nutrient||Amount in 1 cup||Daily adult requirement|
|Carbohydrate (g)||5.2, including 2.5 g of sugar||130|
- May help lower blood pressure.
- May help fight cancer.
- Packed with antioxidants.
- May be a brain booster.
- A natural diuretic.
Rich in Antioxidants
Asparagus is also a good source of antioxidants like Vitamin A and Vitamin E. These antioxidants help the body fight off “free radicals,” or oxygen particles that cells produce as waste. Free radicals can damage the DNA of nearby cells, leading to cancer, heart disease, and other health problems.
Asparagus contains glutathione, a well-known antioxidant that promotes detoxification. It is also a good source of fiber, folate, iron, and vitamins A, C, E, and K, as well as being beneficial to those with high blood pressure. Asparagus is also known to help the kidney and bladder cleanse itself.Does asparagus cleanse liver? ›
Asparagus. Thanks to their diuretic function, they help the cleansing process by activating the functions of the liver and kidneys that eliminate the toxins.Does asparagus clean your gut? ›
Since it's a soluble fiber, it draws water into your gut, softening your stools and making them easier to pass, the article says. In other words, eating more asparagus can help keep your bowel movements regular and prevent constipation.Does asparagus lower blood pressure? ›
The study subjects ingested six grams of this asparagus powder daily for 10 weeks. Both of the asparagus powders lead to a “significant” reduction of blood pressure and fasting blood glucose. The study concluded that asparagus cladophylls and bottom-stems “differentially improve” hypertension.Is asparagus a superfood? ›
It is an excellent source of vitamin K and folate, and a good source of vitamin A, vitamin C, riboflavin, and thiamin. Vitamin K is important in blood clotting and bone building. Folate is used to create DNA and other genetic material.What does asparagus do for your kidneys? ›
Asparagus is low-calorie food and is an excellent source of fibre, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E and vitamin K. It can act as a mild diuretic, clearing toxins and excess fluid out of your kidneys faster. It is soothing to the tubes in the kidneys and is known to prevent stones in the kidney and bladder.What does asparagus do to your brain? ›
Asparagus is an excellent source of vitamin A, vitamin C, and folic acid, all of which contribute to healthy cognitive functioning. Vitamin A has been shown to contribute to maintaining brain plasticity in adulthood.
The folic acid present in asparagus helps the body to absorb more proteins and accelerates the hair growth process. Rich in Vitamin A, C, iron and fiber; this vegetable not only helps stimulate hair production but also is a good source of silicon for healthy hair.
Asparagus is a nutritious and delicious vegetable that can be eaten every day. Low in calories and packed with essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, it's great to include in a fiber-rich diet to keep your digestive system healthy.What is the healthiest way to eat asparagus? ›
Cooking may enhance antioxidant activity in asparagus, but it can also contribute to nutrient loss. This is especially the case with heat-sensitive vitamins like vitamin C. To reap the greatest health benefits, consider incorporating both cooked and raw asparagus into your diet.What is the best drink to flush your liver? ›
- Lemon Water.
- Ginger and Lemon Drink.
- Grapefruit Juice.
- Tumeric Tea.
- Green Tea.
- Chamomile Tea.
- Oat Tea.
- Jujube Fruit Juice.
When asparagus is digested, asparagusic acid gets broken down into sulfur containing byproducts. Sulfur, in general, is not very pleasant to smell, notes Dr. Bobart. When you pee, the sulfur byproducts evaporate almost immediately, causing you to smell that unpleasant scent.Is asparagus good for lungs? ›
It's also especially rich in glutathione, a detoxifying compound that can help destroy carcinogens. For this reason, asparagus may help fight or protect against certain cancers, including bone, breast, lung and colon cancers.What foods help repair the liver? ›
What foods are good for liver repair? Many foods contain specific compounds or antioxidants that have been shown to support liver function. A few examples include grapefruit, blueberries, cranberries, fatty fish, olive oil, and cruciferous vegetables like broccoli or Brussels sprouts.What is the best vegetable to cleanse your liver? ›
Leafy Green Vegetables:
Most powerful allies in cleansing the liver is leafy greens which can be eaten either raw, cooked or as a juice or as a smoothie. Extremely high in chlorophyll, these greens soak up environmental toxins from the blood stream and help detoxify the liver.
Citrus Fruits: Fruits like grapefruit, oranges, limes and lemons all boost the liver's cleansing ability. Even consumed in small amounts (we know some of these can be tart!), citrus fruits help the liver to produce the detoxifying enzymes that flush out pollutants.Does asparagus burn belly fat? ›
Asparagus isn't as popular a veggie as others on this list, but it's a wonder food when it comes to burning fat and slimming down. Asparagus contains the chemical asparagine, which is an alkaloid that acts directly on cells and breaks down fat.
The asparagusic acid in asparagus produces many sulfurous byproducts that give your pee a rotten-like smell. The smell can be detected as early as 15 minutes after eating asparagus and may last up to 14 hours.Is asparagus good for the skin? ›
Regular consumption of asparagus will help to keep your skin hydrated, thanks to the high water content in asparagus. It will also help to prevent glycation, which is the process in our bodies that damages collagen and ultimately leads to those unwanted signs of skin aging.What is the number one vegetable to lower blood pressure? ›
Leafy greens: Cabbage, collard greens, spinach, kale, and other greens are high in nitrates, which have been found to offer blood pressure benefits. It's easier to get your daily dose of greens by varying how you eat them.Does asparagus help in bed? ›
Asparagus is high in vitamin E, which increases blood and oxygen flow to the genitals, and potassium, which is important for healthy sex-hormone production, making this delicious, healthy veggie a well-known aphrodisiac.Does asparagus thicken or thin your blood? ›
That's because asparagus is high in vitamin K, which promotes blood clotting and, in turn, can work against blood-thinning medications, ultimately reducing their effect.Which is healthier spinach or asparagus? ›
A full cup of asparagus contains just 27 calories while spinach provides about 23. You can eat as much as you'd like without feeling guilty. If weight loss is on your goal list, then choosing these veggies regularly should prove helpful.
Asparagus — which is rich in potassium, fiber, vitamins A, C, E and K, and the beneficial trace element chromium — is also known to reduce anxiety. The Chinese government has approved asparagus extract as a natural functional food for its anxiety-reducing properties.Does asparagus give you energy? ›
Asparagus contains high levels of the amino acid asparagine, which is named for its source. Studies have shown that asparagine helps with energy production, and the research suggests it could be particularly helpful for delaying fatigue.What foods make your kidneys happy? ›
- Dark leafy greens. Dark leafy green vegetables such as kale, spinach, chard, and collard greens are loaded with vitamins A and C, calcium, and many other important minerals. ...
- Berries. ...
- Cranberries. ...
- Sweet potatoes. ...
- Olive oil. ...
- Fatty fish. ...
Consider adding healthy greens to your diet such as mustard greens, dandelion leaves, and turnip greens. Dandelion especially increases urine production, cleaning out the kidneys and reducing blood pressure.
Leafy greens like kale and spinach are nutrient-dense foods that are packed with essential vitamins and minerals that help to support kidney function as well as overall health. Leafy greens contain vitamins A, C, and K as well as carotenoids and flavonoids.Is asparagus good for nerves? ›
Green and leafy vegetables.
Broccoli, spinach and asparagus all contain vitamin B, a nutrient important for nerve regeneration and nerve function.
Aside from being a diuretic—hello, slimmer self, bye-bye, water retention—asparagus is considered protein-rich in the vegetable world. Just 100 grams of the green stuff contains 2.4 grams of protein. Asparagus is also the number one plant source of vitamin K, as well as a good source of potassium and antioxidants.Why is asparagus good for depression? ›
Asparagus is a great source of tryptophan, which helps to create serotonin, one of the primary mood-regulating neurotransmitters of the brain. It also contains high levels of folate and fiber, both of which have shown to help ward off depression-like symptoms.What vegetables make your hair thicker? ›
Greens such as Swiss chard, watercress, spinach, and cabbage, promote keratin, a hair protein that strengthens the follicles. Key nutrients: Vitamins A, C, and K, B vitamins, potassium, folate.
The only way to reverse Male Pattern Baldness, or Androgenic Alopecia to give the condition its proper name, is to inhibit the production of DHT. Neither asparagus, nor any other food has been shown to be effective in inhibiting the effects of DHT on hair follicles.When should you not eat asparagus? ›
Signs Your Asparagus Has Gone Bad
By the time the tips turn black, you'll notice they're completely mushy and probably smell a little funky, too. If your asparagus is slimy or sticky, feels mushy and soft, smells foul or has visible signs of mold, it's time to toss it.
You can eat the whole spear except for the woody stem towards the bottom. Hold the asparagus spear on each end firmly. Gently bend the asparagus so that it bows out away from you.How many sticks of asparagus should I eat? ›
Five asparagus spears or 80g of asparagus counts as one portion towards your five-a-day.What part of asparagus is the best? ›
Asparagus stalks are famously tender at the tips and hard and woody at the ends, so nearly every recipe you'll find online starts with trimming those tough bases before cooking.
Asparagus is excellent served with any type of dairy product, such as cheese (particularly Grana Padano or Parmigiano), butter and any sauces containing dairy produce or cream. - Asparagus and eggs. A great classic? Green asparagus, eggs and truffle.Are the stems of asparagus good to eat? ›
We've long been told that you should bend a spear of asparagus until it snaps, and that the thick end is too tough to eat. This is not strictly true, because the spear snaps at its weakest point, and the stalk is edible and tender far below that point. The best way to judge where to cut off the stalk is by tasting it.What is the warning about asparagus? ›
According to the Farm House Guide, you should also be on the lookout for mold and dark spots on the stalks. If your asparagus is wilted or even turned, it is best to toss it out.What country eats the most asparagus? ›
With nearly X thousand tons, China became the world's leading asparagus consuming country, mixed up X% of global consumption. The other major consumers were Peru (X thousand tons) and the United States (X thousand tons), with a share of X% and X%, respectively.What does asparagus clean in your body? ›
Asparagus can act as a natural diuretic, according to a 2010 study published in the West Indian Medical Journal. This can help rid the body of excess salt and fluid, making it especially good for people suffering from edema and high blood pressure. It also helps flush out toxins in kidneys and prevent kidney stones.Why is asparagus a superfood? ›
Asparagus is high in antioxidants and packs a powerful punch of healthy vitamins and minerals: fiber, vitamins A, C, E and K and folate. It's also a great source of copper, an essential trace mineral that aids in collagen formation, energy production and iron absorption.Is asparagus good or bad for your kidneys? ›
“Asparagus is considered a low-potassium food in small portions,” says Dr. Bobart. “It can be eaten as part of a healthy diet and will not harm your kidneys.” Those with kidney disease are encouraged to eat a low-potassium diet, so asparagus (six stalks or less) is a great addition.Does asparagus clean your colon? ›
Asparagus Is Great for Gut Health
Since it's a soluble fiber, it draws water into your gut, softening your stools and making them easier to pass, the article says. In other words, eating more asparagus can help keep your bowel movements regular and prevent constipation.
Can you eat too much asparagus? There are no known side effects of eating too much asparagus, but in large quantities, the fiber in the vegetable may cause diarrhea, gas, or bloating.Does asparagus clean your urinary tract? ›
Asparagus is a diuretic, which means it will help you pee more often, flushing out your urinary tract and removing any extra salts from your body, says Lemein. Some research has found that asparagus may help combat UTIs. Praise hands.
Asparagus has more than one gram of soluble fiber per cup, which lowers the risk of heart disease, and the amino acid asparagine helps the body flush out excess salt. Asparagus has excellent anti-inflammatory effects and high levels of antioxidants, both of which may help reduce the risk of heart disease.
Asparagus boosts your immune system
Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant and it helps to protect your cells from the effects of free radicals and strengthens your immune system. Cooking asparagus with a little olive oil can be even more beneficial because vitamin E is absorbed better if eaten with a little healthy fat.
- Drink more water. Drinking enough fluid every day is essential to a person's overall health. ...
- Reduce sodium intake. ...
- Make dietary changes.