Spinach Festival Day
Spinach Festival Day is observed next on Sunday, March 26th, 2023 (176 days from today).
Spinach Festival Day is celebrated annually on March 26th to show the importance and the function of Spinach, which is a healthy food. This is also considered as a national food holiday.
Origin of Spinach Festival Day
Until now, there is no official evidences about the origin or the creator of Spinach Festival Day. However, we only know that Spinach is a rich source of iron and calcium. Therefore, it need to have a day for its celebration.
6 Benefits of Spinach
- Spinach is nutrient-rich
Do you know that three cups of raw spinach only contains 20 calories, no fat, 2 grams of protein, and 3 grams of carbohydrates with 2 grams of fiber. Although it has very few calories, spinach is packed with nutrients. One-third cup provides more than 300% of the daily requirement for bone-supporting vitamin K.
Spinach also contains 45% of the daily requirement of folate, B vitamin to help prevent from red blood cells and DNA. And spinach provides 15% of the daily target for both iron and magnesium, 10% for potassium and 6% for calcium, along with small amounts of other B vitamins.
- Spinach is high in antioxidants
Moreover, many vitamins and minerals, spinach also provides antioxidants that help fight inflammation and protect against disease. Kaempferol in spinach is very useful to reduce the risk of cancer, as well as slow its growth and spread. What make spinach become fresh and clean?
Spinach is a functional food
In a study published in the journal Food & Function, researchers summarized the protective effects of spinach, based on the activity of phytochemical compounds and the natural bioactivity of spinach. They say these spinach-derived substances can reduce oxidative stress, DNA damage and disease. They can also positively affect the expression of genes involved in metabolism and inflammation. Additionally, they trigger the release of satiety hormones, which can make you feel fuller and more satisfied.
For some above reasons, the researchers concluded that the more spinach you eat, the healthier heart disease, cancer, type 2 diabetes, and obesity you are.
- Spinach supports brain health
Spinach's anti-inflammatory effects make it a prime candidate for brain protection, especially against aging. In one study, researchers tracked the eating and cognitive abilities of more than 950 older adults for about five years. They saw a significantly reduced rate of cognitive decline in those who ate more green leafy vegetables. The data shows that people who eat one to two servings of greens per day have the same cognitive ability as someone 11 years younger than those who don't.
- Spinach may help manage blood pressure
Spinach is a natural source of nitrates, compounds that open up blood vessels to improve blood flow and ease the workload on the heart. In one small study, published in the Journal of Nutrition, 11 men and seven women consumed four different nitrate-rich beverages, including spinach drinks.
The researchers found that blood nitrate levels increased after drinking all four beverages. In addition, drinks made from beetroot juice and rocket salad (another green leaf) also reduce blood pressure. Diastolic blood pressure remains lower 5 hours after eating spinach and rocket drinks. (Diastolic is the lower number on a blood pressure reading, which indicates the pressure in your arteries between beats.)
- Spinach protects eye health
One of the antioxidants in spinach, called lutein, has been shown to reduce the risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), an eye disease that can blur central, sharp vision strokes necessary for activities such as reading and driving. AMD is the main cause of vision loss of people at 50 years old and after. There is currently no treatment for reversing this condition, so prevention is key.
In a Japanese study, researchers examined the eyes of 11 healthy non-smokers who consumed 75 grams of frozen spinach containing 10 mg of lutein daily for two months. Eating lutein-rich spinach increases blood levels of lutein and it also increases measures of macular pigment optical density (MPOD). That's important, as macular pigment acts like an inner sunglasses to protect the eyes, and low or reduced MPOD is a risk factor for AMD. This study indicates that spinach may help reduce the risk of AMD.
How to celebrate Spinach Festival Day
Have you prepared any things to celebrate this day with your family? The best and most effective way to have a significant Spinach Festival Day is to cook a dish from Spinach by yourself.
How cooking spinach affects its nutrients
Using spinach with both raw and cooked dishes is very healthy, some research shows that undercooked greens is one of the best way to preserve its lutein content.
In a Swedish study, after buying spinach, spinach are cooked with a variety of methods for up to 90 minutes. The longer spinach is boiled, the lower the level of residual lutein decreases. When frying at high heat, a large part of the lutein is decomposed within just two minutes.
Scientists say the best way to consume spinach to get the maximum amount of lutein is possibly a smoothie combined with a healthy fat, such as avocado or almond butter. Therefore, spinach would be cut into small pieces to have more lutein which help to increase antioxidant absorption.
Older research shows that cooking also affects the folate content of spinach; Boiling reduces this B vitamin level by almost half. However, steaming did not significantly lose folate, even after four and a half minutes.
A recent study looked at the effect of different cooking methods on the vitamin content of several selected vegetables, including spinach. The researchers found that microwave cooking caused a loss of vitamin K. Cooking also reduced the vitamin E content of spinach, but increased the vitamin A content. Plants soften, helping to release and absorb nutrients.
Again, for best results, combine how you consume spinach—some raw, some cooked—but try not to overcook it.
ObservedSpinach Festival Day has been observed annually on March 26th.
Friday, March 26th, 2021
Saturday, March 26th, 2022
Sunday, March 26th, 2023
Tuesday, March 26th, 2024
Wednesday, March 26th, 2025