Vegetables– steamed or raw?

Vegetables. These can be hard for some people. Maybe it’s the taste or maybe it’s a sensitive stomach or texture.

I get asked all the time how the healthiest way to eat them is: raw, cooked, broiled? So here it is. Raw veggies usually contain more nutrients but that doesn’t mean that it’s better for you… it’s much more complex than that and really depends on what your body absorbs.

Cooked veggies can give you more antioxidants and minerals that your body can absorb. For example, cooked spinach has 245 mg/cup of calcium and raw spinach only has 30 mg/cup of calcium. They can also help aid digestion so if your stomach is sensitive to a veggie, see if cooking it helps.

However, when boiling veggies you can lose antioxidants so steaming is always better. During the boiling process, the nutrients escape. That’s why bone broth is so healthy for you… if you make homemade broth, make sure to throw in lots of veggies so the nutrients leave them and go into your bone broth.

So what are some pros to eating your veggies raw? Phytonutrients, which have been found to reduce certain chronic diseases such as heart disease and cancer, can be found in raw veggies. By heating these vegetables, it can destroy the beneficial compounds.

A 2018 study showed that people who ate vegetables raw, were more psychologically well than those who ate them in cooked. Also, for those trying to lose weight, raw veggies are better because it requires more chewing and slows the eating process

As you can see, no matter what form you take your veggies, any vegetable is a great addition to a healthy diet. It truly depends on your health goals… lowering the risk of heart disease, weight loss? And how your body handles vegetables. I truly believe that veggies are hard to digest raw however your body can handle them, raw, steaming, boiled or supplements with Vitamin K – get your veggies!