As I was flipping through my fancy new cookbook this weekend, I came upon a known fact that I ALWAYS forget. It has to do with spinach, spinach is an amazing little leaf, it has calcium and iron and loads of other great things, it also has oxalate. Oxalate hinders the absorption of calcium and iron in the bloodstream basically reducing your raw spinach intake to some good fiber.
What the hell, right?
After some clicking around on the internet, since my fancy new cookbook did not reiterate how to unlock the full potential of your spinach, here’s what I re-learned:
Two easiest and most common ways to get your Popeye on.
1. Light cooking – this can breakdown some of the oxalate encouraging more nutrient (calcium and iron) absorption. The trouble here is over cook and you’ve killed the nutrients anyway.
2. Add vitamin C – Vitamin C blocks the oxalate from binding to the calcium and iron so they can be absorbed. Something I’m not totally clear on are the acceptable methods for spinach and vitamin C pairing, for example there is VItamin C in my Vega and Amazing Grass powders. I do suspect that in this instance, this combo works best with whole food, here’s a list of some foods highest in Vitamin C:
- Red and Green Hot Chili Peppers
- Bell Peppers
- Fresh Herbs (Thyme and Parsley)
- Dark Leafy Greens (Kale, Mustard Greens, Garden Cress)
- Broccoli, Cauliflower, Brussel Sprouts
- Oranges and Clementines