Leeks have many health benefits such as relieves inflammation; prevents anemia; lowers blood pressure; supports cardiovascular health; keeps skin clean and healthy; prevents cataracts and improves eye health. Also, leeks have other health benefits, such as improving digestion; aid in weight loss; prevents cancer; manages types 2 diabetes; supports kidney function and improves bone health. It look like shrubs or flowers but they are actually vegetables. It belong to the genus Allium. Leeks are related to onions, shallots and chives. Leeks have stalks instead of bulbs.
They are easy to grow and are resilient. Leeks can withstand harsh weather conditions. This vegetable is indigenous to the Mediterranean and Middle East but nowadays it is cultivated in many parts of the world due to its health benefits and medicinal properties. Leeks are crunchy and hard. The edible part of this vegetable is its stalk which is just above the roots and stem base. Most commonly, leeks are used in the culinary applications. It have a balmy onion flavor and its stalk is most commonly used to enhance the flavor of broths.
Health benefits of leeks
Improves digestion: Leeks are abundant in prebiotic carbs which feed the good bacteria in the stomach and it can help to produce digestive enzymes. It can help to promote proper bowel movement and it will allow a smooth passage for food through the digestive tract due to its high amount of fiber.
Helpful for weight loss: Leeks are beneficial for the weight loss due to the presence of dietary fiber. Fiber will fill you and it will keep your stomach feeling full for a longer period. It can inhibit cravings and it will prevent you from feeling frequently hungry.
Aid in cancer prevention: Leeks have Vitamin C which is very importing for promoting overall health. This vitamin is a potent cancer – fighting and antioxidant component. It can combat free radicals and it will neutralize them before they can make oxidative damage to the cells. Oxidative damage is often a cause for the cancer.
Helps manage type 2 diabetes: It is known that leeks are low in calories and they are low – glycemic food. Leeks inhibit a-amylase activity which can support an array of anti – diabetic functions. The a-amylase breaks down complex carbs into sugars which is causing blood sugar crashes and spikes. The inhibition of this enzyme can slow down the speed by which the glucose enters blood circulation. Also, It have allicin which can help to reduce the likelihood of diabetic neuropathy and metabolic syndrome occurring. It have antioxidants and flavonoids which can fight against free radical damage and they can strengthen the diabetic individual’s cardiac function.
Diuretic: Leeks are natural diuretics and they can help to increase the amount of sodium and water expelled from your body as urine. Natural diuretics are beneficial for people who suffer from hypertension and it can help to preserve kidney function by reducing the accumulation of water soluble toxins and salts. Diuretic can help your kidneys to flush out more sodium into your urine. Sodium takes the water from the blood and it reduces the pressure on vessel walls which is known as blood pressure.
Improves bone health: Vitamin K is very effective for every part of our bodies. When we take enough Vitamin K, then it activates a protein called osteocalcin which is playing an important role in promoting bone health and decrease the bone resorption. You should add It in your diet so you will get enough Vitamin K needed for the health of your bone tissue as you are getting older.
Relieves inflammation: Leeks have anti – inflammatory properties which in combination of antioxidant vitamins can help to reduce the inflammation of the skin and bone. It can be used as a home remedy for rheumatic conditions, like arthritis.
Lowers blood pressure: Potassium serves as a vasodilator which can minimize the tension from the blood vessels to provide smooth blood flow through the arteries. Leeks are rich in potassium.