Spinach provides innumerable health benefits. Therefore, it is a must to include it in the diet of kids. Learn more about the health benefits of spinach and find out how to include it in your child’s diet.
Spinach is Popeye's favourite food all right, but just try giving it to the kids. Spinach is a dark green vegetable and has lots of vitamins and minerals, which protects us from various life threatening diseases. The antioxidants, vitamin A, vitamin C and vitamin E found in spinach reduce the risk of cancer, heart diseases and cataract.
It has highest amount of Chlorophyll among all green vegetables, a substance, which stimulates hemoglobin and red cell production. Age-related blindness in older people is very common. Lutein and Zeaxantin are two pigments supplied by spinach that keeps the eyes healthy in old age.
The Best Way to Buy Spinach
Spinach should be bright green in colour. Do not buy spinach, which is yellowish or rotten. Sometimes, spinach is sprayed with water to make it look fresh, but you can actually gauge its freshness when it is dry. Avoid buying leaves that have holes in them; it means they are infested by insects. Always wash spinach thoroughly before using. Soak it in water for 10 - 15 minutes before you scrub it and dry. Storing Spinach Make sure that the leaves are completely dry. Wrap the spinach leaves in a tissue paper. Put it in an airtight bag and keep it in the refrigerator, if you are not using it immediately. Otherwise, use it within 2-3 days.
Tips for Including Spinach in the Diet of Kids
Here are some simple yet effective ways to include spinach in your child’s diet
- Add spinach leaves in burgers and sandwiches instead of lettuce.
- Include raw spinach leaves in green salads.
- Chop spinach leaves finely and garnish a curry and vegetable.
- Make your child’s spinach soup taste bud-friendly by adding little butter or cream to it.
- Include finely chopped spinach in all of your Paratha recipes.
- Use chopped spinach leaves in egg rolls and other vegetable rolls.
- Add chopped spinach leaves while making Dal and your kid will not even notice it and also would not be able to separate it.
- Blend spinach with other fruits for making yummy fruit smootheis for your child.
Two Simple Curd-based Spinach Recipes
Have cooked spinach as a regular vegetable in your and your child’s diet. Here is a quick way to include this much-valuable green to your daily diet.
Recipe 1 - Spinach Vegetable
- 1 bunch of finely chopped spinach
- 2 tbsp cooking oil
- 2 tbsp curd
- 2 tsp coriander powder
- 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- Salt to taste.
Take curd in a bowl and mix the spices (and salt) in it. Heat oil in a pan. Add spinach to it and cook for other 2-3 minutes. Avoid overcooking or it will lose its nutritional value. Add the curd mixture. Remove from fire after a few seconds.
Recipe 2 - Spinach Raita
Alternately, boil spinach in water to blanch it. Drain water and add these leaves to curds. Spice it with cumin powder, a pinch of rock salt and green chilli or red chilli powder, according to personal taste. Add salt to taste. If the curd is on the sour side, you can add a pinch of sugar, too.
You must include spinach in your family diet as the healthy dose of potassium and calcium found in spinach helps regulate blood pressure. Spinach juice taken on empty stomach is ideal for health. The benefits of spinach do not stop here! Spinach and other leafy greens also provide folic acid that reduces the risk of birth defects. Spinach is a good source of iron and can be medicinal for anaemic conditions. So make sure that you follow all the above mentioned tips to include Popeye’s Green Wonder in your child’s diet and make him or her reap its maximum health benefits.Why do kids hate eating green vegetables? What are the health benefits of spinach? How to include spinach in the diet of children? Discuss here.