3 benefits of red leaf lettuce

Red lettuce or Italian lettuce is an increasingly common vegetable in Western countries. It is a variant that has a greater contribution of phytonutrients, which entails a series of properties at the nutritional level that we will detail later.

It is a recommended alternative to traditional green leaf lettuce or other typical salad vegetables, such as endive or spinach. It should be noted that one of the key points in a healthy diet is variety. Also as far as vegetables are concerned.

In this way, a consumption of different antioxidant substances is guaranteed, which has a positive impact on the state of health, from an efficient neutralization of the formation of free radicals.

Benefits of red lettuce

We are going to tell you about the main benefits of consuming this variety of lettuce, different from the conventional one.

1. Higher content of antioxidants

The foods of the vegetable kingdom that have an intense red or purple color have a series of pigments with high antioxidant capacity: anthocyanins. It has been shown that this class of phytonutrients is essential to prevent the formation of free radicals, which reduces the incidence of many chronic pathologies.

These compounds also help prevent the development of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's. For this reason, it is important that they appear in the diet on a regular basis.

The food that concentrates a greater amount of anthocyanins in its interior is the blueberry. However, other representatives of vegetables, such as red lettuce or beets, also stand out for the presence of said phytonutrient.

Anthocyanins are natural antioxidants that are found as pigments in many vegetables, for example blueberries.

To know more: What are antioxidants and what are they for?

2. Improves intestinal transit

If lettuce in general stands out for something, both green and red, it is because of the presence of fiber. This substance is essential to improve intestinal transit and to prevent constipation, according to research published in the journal Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics.

In addition, the soluble fiber contained in lettuce serves as an energy substrate for the bacteria that inhabit the intestinal tract. In this way, the health of the microbiota is improved, which becomes more functional. From now on the incidence of many inflammatory diseases of the digestive tract is reduced, thanks to the internal synthesis of short chain fatty acids.

3. Ensures a good state of hydration

Red lettuce contains a high concentration of water inside. Its consumption, therefore, contributes to achieving water balance, helping to prevent dehydration processes from developing.

It should be taken into account that, thanks to the fiber and the water it contains, red lettuce is capable of generating satiety. According to the evidence, consuming a glass of water before meals helps to suppress the appetite. Lettuce can have a similar effect, so including it as a first course can be a success if you want to lose weight.

You may also be interested in: Satiety hormone: 5 important facts that you will like to know

Contraindications of the consumption of red lettuce

Not all that glitters is gold, since there are also some contraindications regarding the consumption of red lettuce. It is a food with weathering capacity, that is, it can increase the formation of gas in the intestine. This can be inconvenient for people who are prone to flatulence.

It must also be taken into account that it is a product that slows down the digestive process, which can limit its consumption, for example, prior to a sports competition.

Anyway, most of the population does not usually have digestive problems after eating red lettuce. For this reason, it is a food that can be included in the diet on a regular basis without inconvenience. However, it is important to check tolerance.

The only relevant problem with red lettuce is its ability to generate gases with consequent abdominal pain.

Red lettuce: source of antioxidants

As we have commented, red lettuce stands out for its antioxidant content, surpassing its green counterpart. The anthocyanins that give it color are capable of neutralizing the formation of free radicals, impacting on the state of health.

At the same time, It is an optimal food to introduce in the context of low-calorie diets. This is because it has high doses of water and fiber, which causes it to easily generate satiety.

Finally, keep in mind that subjects prone to flatulence or heavy digestion must exercise some caution when consuming red lettuce, as it could increase the number of intestinal discomfort. However, it is not a frequent problem.

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