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Protein in Spinach | Healthcare-Online

Protein in Spinach 

Spinach can be used in a wide variety of culinary applications such as sandwiches, soups or salads. The leaves can be frozen, canned or eaten fresh which offers a large variety of storage options as well. Spinach is high in iron, vitamin A, vitamin K and protein. The actual amount of protein available in a serving of spinach will vary based on how it has been prepared. Find out the health benefits of spinach as well as some healthy spinach recipes.

Health Benefits of Spinach

Spinach is known for containing high levels of antioxidants, nutrients and minerals including fiber, calcium and iron. The nutrients in spinach are known to benefit the brain, bones and eyes among others. Many describe eating spinach as taking "a breath of fresh air" because the high level of chlorophyll in spinach cells will oxygenate the cells in the body.

  1. Digestion. A serving of spinach contains around one fifth of your daily requirement of fiber which assists in digestion, maintaining your blood sugar, prevents constipation and helps prevent overeating.
  2. Anti-Cancer. Some phytonutrients in spinach have been shown to prevent prostate, stomach and skin cancers.
  3. Anti-Inflammatory. Spinach contains the epoxyxanthophylls neoxanthin and violazanthin that have essential anti-inflammatory properties.
  4. Antioxidants. Spinach is a vital source of manganese, beta-carotene, selenium, zinc and vitamins C and E. These are all powerful antioxidants that can help prevent conditions such as atherosclerosis or osteoporosis.
  5. Blood Pressure Management. Peptides in spinach can inhibit angiotensin I-converting enzymes to help you maintain a lower blood pressure.
  6. Eye Health. Spinach is very high in zeaxanthin and lutein that help to prevent macular degeneration and cataracts.
  7. Immunity Enhancement. A serving of spinach is very high in vitamin A which can help to protect the mucus membranes, intestinal, urinary and respiratory tracts from damage and infection.
  8. Skin. The high amounts of vitamin A in spinach also help the skin retain moisture and prevent against wrinkles, acne, keratinization and psoriasis.
  9. Bones. A cup of spinach contains around 1000 percent of your daily requirement for vitamin K that helps to prevent the breakdown of the bones.
  10. Other Benefits. The vitamin K in spinach also helps to maintain nerve and brain function and is essential to carboxylation in the body.

Protein in Spinach

Incomplete Protein

It's important for you to know that the protein in spinach is incomplete protein. Incomplete proteins are missing one or more of the amino acids that make up a protein. Animal proteins tend to be complete proteins, but proteins from vegetables, legumes or grains often need to be combined with other protein sources in order to get all of these essential amino acids in one meal. Unluckily, few people know that protein in Spinach is incomplete.

Protein in Spinach

The amount of protein in a serving of spinach will vary based on the type of spinach used and how it is prepared.

Types of spinach

Calorie

Protein content(g)

Spinach, 1 cup

6

.86g

Spinach, raw 1 cup

6

.86g

Spinach, raw 1 leaf

2

.29g

Spinach, cooked, boiled, drained with salt, 1 cup

41

5.35g

Spinach froze, chopped or leaf, unprepared, 1 cup

48

6.15g

Spinach, cooked, boiled, drained, without salt

41

5.35g

Baby spinach, 2 cups

20

2g

Healthy Spinach Recipes

1. Spinach and White Bean Soup

Servings: 4

Ingredients: 3 cups baby spinach, a finely minced garlic clove, a finely minced shallot,1/2 cup whole wheat pasta shells, a can of white beans, a can of diced tomatoes, 3-4 cups chicken broth, 2 teaspoons olive oil a teaspoon rosemary, 1/8 teaspoon black pepper, red pepper flake to taste.

Instructions:

  • Sautee the garlic and shallots in olive oil in a large sauce pan.
  • Add the beans, tomatoes, broth and rosemary then season the mixture with salt and red pepper flake.
  • Bring your soup to a boil and add the pasta.
  • Cook the soup for 12 minutes, and add more broth as necessary if the soup appears to be too thick.
  • Add your spinach and allow it to cook until it is wilted.

2. Spinach and Chickpeas

Servings: 4

Ingredients: A package of frozen spinach that has been defrosted and chopped, 3 cups cooked chickpeas, 1.5 cups fresh chopped tomatoes, 3 minced garlic cloves, 2 chopped medium onions, a tablespoon of olive oil, a teaspoon paprika, a teaspoon oregano, red pepper flake to taste, lemon juice to taste.

Instructions:

  • Sautee the garlic and onions in the olive oil over medium heat.
  • Add your tomatoes, chickpeas, oregano, paprika and red pepper flake, allowing the mixture to simmer for around 18 minutes.
  • Stir the mixture occasionally. Add your spinach and cook for an additional 7 minutes.
  • Finish by adding the lemon juice, salt and pepper before serving.

3. Spinach and Mushroom Pasta

Servings: 4

Ingredients: 2 cups fresh spinach, 12 ounces rotini noodles, one cup chopped onion, 3 minced garlic cloves, ½ cup chopped fresh basil, 4 cups sliced fresh mixed mushrooms, a tablespoon of olive oil, a tablespoon of fresh thyme, 2 cups milk, 2 tablespoons flour, a teaspoon salt, ground pepper to taste, parmesan cheese to taste.

Instructions:

  • Heat the garlic, thyme and onions in a non-stick pan for one minute on medium-high heat.
  • Add the mushrooms, cooking for around 8 minutes or until the juices begin to run.
  • Stir the mushrooms frequently so they brown but do not burn.
  • Sprinkle in the flour, stirring for one minute and gently pour in the milk.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil while stirring constantly until the sauce thickens, around 3 minutes.
  • Add the spinach, salt, pepper and basil and allow the mixture to cook until the spinach wilts. Toss the finished sauce with the cooked pasta and top individual servings with parmesan cheese.

4. Spinach and Beef Burritos

Servings: 8

Ingredients: A package of frozen chopped spinach that is defrosted and drained, a pound of lean ground beef, 1 cup chunky salsa, ¾ cup Colby jack cheese, a tablespoon chili powder, ¼ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon pepper, ¼ teaspoon cumin, 8 warm medium flour tortillas.

Instructions:

  • Brown the ground beef in a large nonstick skillet until it is no longer pink.
  • Pour off the excess drippings and season the meat with the salt, pepper, chili powder and cumin.
  • Add the salsa and spinach, stirring until the mixture is warmed through then remove the food from the heat and mix in the cheese.
  • Serve a half cup of the mixture in each tortilla and fold the bottom up over the filling the fold each side into the center so the edges overlap and consume.