Asparagus spears are both tasty and healthy. Asparagus (Asparagus officinalis) is a perennial blooming plant that has been used for food and medicinal since 3,000 B.C. It was thought to have aphrodisiac powers by many ancient societies. Asparagus is now well known as a high-nutrient, low-calorie, and low-sodium source of vitamins, minerals, and fiber.
Asparagus Nutrition Facts
A half cup (90g) of cooked asparagus has 20 calories, 2.2 grams of protein, 3.7 grams of carbs, and 0.2 grams of fat. Vitamin K, vitamin A, and zinc are all abundant in asparagus. The USDA has given the following nutritional information.
Asparagus is a great complement to any ketogenic or low-carb diet. Because simple carbohydrates (such as sugar) make up a tiny fraction of the carb content, it has a low glycemic index (GI) and has a GI of less than 15.
Asparagus also contains dietary fiber, which is a type of indigestible carbohydrate that aids in digestion, blood sugar regulation, and fat absorption with the body. Asparagus fiber is mostly insoluble, which means it absorbs water from the intestines to soften feces and make them easier to pass.
Asparagus is almost fat-free, with only a trace of beneficial polyunsaturated fats. These fatty acids are necessary for brain function as well as cell proliferation.
Many common asparagus preparations and toppings (such as butter and Hollandaise sauce) do, however, add fat and calories. To add taste and additional healthy fats, sprinkle spears with a teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil.
Asparagus has a low protein content, with only 2.2 grams per half-cup meal. But it’ll suffice to cover part of your daily dietary requirements.
Adults should consume around 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight (or 0.36 grams per pound) each day on average. For the average inactive male, this equates to 56 grams per day, and for the average sedentary woman, it equates to 46 grams per day.
Minerals And Vitamins
Asparagus can meet a large amount of your daily dietary requirements. The quantity of each vitamin supplied in a serving of asparagus as a percentage of recommended daily intakes (RDI) in a 2,000-calorie diet is as follows:
Vitamin A, vitamin C, iron, potassium, and phosphorus are all found in asparagus.
A half cup of cooked asparagus (90g) has 20 calories, with 57 percent of the calories coming from carbohydrates, 36 percent from protein, and 7% from fat.
Asparagus is both a low-calorie and low-fat veggie. It has a high quantity of vitamin K and folate, among other nutrients.
Health Benefits Of Asparagus
Asparagus contains minerals and chemicals that are thought to have substantial health advantages.
Lowers Blood Pressure
Asparagus is a potassium-rich vegetable. Because it relaxes the walls of the arteries (increasing circulation) and promotes salt output from the kidneys, a higher consumption of potassium-rich foods is linked to lower blood pressure.
Vitamins A and C are also potent antioxidants that aid in the elimination of free radicals in the bloodstream. This helps to protect the circulatory system by lowering the risk of atherosclerosis (artery hardening) and cardiovascular disease.
Purple asparagus also includes anthocyanins, antioxidant chemicals that give the vegetable its brilliant color while also providing significant cardioprotective benefits.
Asparagus also has modest diuretic qualities, which help to decrease blood pressure by encouraging the body to excrete extra fluids. After 10 weeks of taking an oral dosage of powdered asparagus, 28 individuals had an almost 8 point decline in their systolic blood pressure and a nearly 5 point drop in their diastolic blood pressure, according to a 2013 research. It also helped to lower total cholesterol and fasting glucose.
Supports A Healthy Pregnancy
To support a healthy pregnancy and lower the chance of neural tube abnormalities like spina bifida, most obstetricians suggest that pregnant women ingest at least 600 micrograms of folate daily (typically, at least some of this is contained in a prenatal vitamin).
Asparagus has 134 micrograms of folate per half-cup serving. Asparagine, a non-essential amino acid, is also found in asparagus and is necessary for the regular development and function of the brain.
Protects Against Some Chronic Diseases
Asparagus is high in inulin, a kind of fiber that promotes good gut flora. It accomplishes so in part by blocking polysaccharides, which are strong bacterial endotoxins.
Asparagus, which contains about 2 to 3 grams of inulin per serving, may help to prevent disorders caused by high polysaccharide levels. Ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection, and, to a lesser extent, cystic fibrosis, atherosclerosis, and autoimmune illnesses such as rheumatoid arthritis are among them.
Asparagus is quite infrequently linked to allergies. Trithiane-5-carboxylic acid, on the other hand, is discovered in greater amounts in immature asparagus stalks. Contact dermatitis, which affects the hands and fingers, or contact urticaria, which causes swollen and itchy lips, may occur in those who harvest or consume these slender, early-season stalks. 1
Allergy symptoms are usually minor and only last a few minutes. If the symptoms don’t go away or get worse, see your doctor.
Side Effects Of Asparagus
You should avoid eating asparagus if you’re on lithium since it has a moderate diuretic impact. Asparagus has the potential to minimize excretion while also increasing the concentration of lithium in the blood. This might make the drug’s negative effects worse.
Asparagus also contains a lot of vitamin K. Because of its influence on blood coagulation, those who take Coumadin (warfarin) must ingest regular doses of this vitamin. If you take Coumadin, talk to your doctor and/or a trained dietician about your diet.
You’re not alone if you notice a weird stench in your urine after eating asparagus. Asparagusic acid is a sulfurous amino acid found in the vegetable that breaks down after digestion. This results in pungent chemical compounds being expelled shortly after eating asparagus and up to a day later. While the sulfurous compounds are unpleasant, they are not hazardous.
Asparagus comes in green, white, and even purple varieties. The green type is the most frequent in the United States, whereas white asparagus is popular in Europe.
Per serving, white and green asparagus have about the same amount of calories, carbs, and fiber. White asparagus, on the other hand, is covered with dirt as it sprouts. It does not create chlorophyll, a potentially useful phytochemical, because it is not exposed to light. White asparagus also has a lower vitamin C content.
White asparagus is often thicker and more delicate than green asparagus. It also has a little nutty flavor and is less stringy than its green counterpart.
Asparagus is also available in frozen and tinned form. Frozen veggies have the same nutritional value as fresh vegetables. Canned versions typically do as well, although they often include salt as well. Rinse canned veggies or beans before eating to avoid salt consumption.
When It’s Best To Consume Asparagus
Asparagus is available all year, as it has become a mainstay in most food markets. Nonetheless, the peak season is in April and May, so take advantage of the finest and delicate spears while they are available.
Choose stems with a securely closed blossom when buying fresh asparagus. The stalks should be vibrant in color, sturdy, and plump and straight in appearance. Avoid weak, mushy, blemished, or dull-colored asparagus.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Is Asparagus A Good Source Of Protein?
Asparagus is a popular vegetable that is abundant in nutrients. Protein content of asparagus is as follows: Asparagus provides 3 g of protein per cup (134 g). Asparagus has 2.2 g and 20 calories per 100 g.
Which Has More Protein Broccoli Or Asparagus?
In terms of macronutrient ratios, asparagus is higher in protein, lower in carbohydrates, and similar in fat to broccoli. For protein, carbs, and fat from calories, asparagus has a macronutrient ratio of 34:61:5, whereas broccoli has a ratio of 28:65:7.
How Much Protein Is In A Bunch Of Asparagus?
2.2 grams of protein 0.2 grams of fat 1.8 grams of fiber 12 percent of the RDI for vitamin C.
Can You Eat Too Much Asparagus?
“Eating too much asparagus has no life-threatening negative effects,” Flores explained, “but there may be some unpleasant side effects such as flatulence and a detectable odor in the urine.” It’s also possible to have an allergy to asparagus, in which case you shouldn’t eat it, according to her.