According to APROA, tomatoes, cucumbers, pumpkin, peppers or eggplants are some of the fresh, nutritious, healthy and versatile vegetables that should not be missing in the kitchen these days. With the help of APROA experts, they help understand their benefits and how to optimise them with other ingredients of the Mediterranean diet
From field to table, tasty, versatile and very healthy. Vegetables are a rich source of vitamins and minerals, fiber, phytoesteroles, flavonoids and other antioxidants. The varied consumption of fruits and vegetables, linked inextricably to the Mediterranean diet, helps to ensure for our organism many of those essential nutrients, according to the consensus of the medical and scientific community. According to World Health Organization (WHO), Daily intake of fruits and vegetables can reduce the risk of some diseases, while medical evidence finds that taking these natural foods as part of a healthy diet low in fats, sugars and salt (or sodium), contribute to preventing weight gain and reducing the risk of obesity.
Autumn is a good time to enjoy vegetables such as tomato, cucumber, zucchini, pepper or eggplant, which offer great versatility in a thousand and affordable but very nutritious gastronomic dishes. According to data from the MAPA consumption panel, Spanish households consumed some 2,956 million kilos of fresh vegetables worth about 5,742 million euros, although per capita consumption is still far from medical recommendations (five pieces of fruits and vegetables a day). With the help of experts Asociación de Organización de Produceres de Frutas y Hortalizas de Andalucía (APROA)we remember some of the reasons for taking vegetables, a basic pillar of the Mediterranean diet, declared an immaterial heritage of humanity by UNESCO.
Take, the “rey” of vegetables for their antioxidant power
It is one of the main attributes of tomato, although not sufficiently known by consumers. It is lycopene, an carotenoid that has a high antioxidant power. But there is more: it contains provitamin A (betacarotenes) and is rich in vitamins C and E. Another notable aspect is that the beneficial effects can be enhanced by combining tomato with other ingredients of the healthy Mediterranean diet. For example, if we crush and cook the tomato, combining it with extra virgin olive oil (such as aliño), we will facilitate the incorporation or absorption of lycopene to our organism. Among the curiosities to take into account, the tomato will reach its peak of concentration in lycos with a more mature fruit, of intense red.
Cucumber: Water, potassium and other reasons
Cucumber is one of the richest vegetables in water, so it provides very few calories (13 kcal per 100 grams). For its part, the most abundant mineral in the cucumber is potassium, and in a lower proportion are phosphorus and magnesium. The consumption of the cucumber will not provide fiber, a low amount of vitamin C, provitamin A and vitamin E, and in lower proportions, vitamins of group B such as folates, B1, B2 and B3. And, his skin, hides small amounts of beta-carotene, very to be taken into account in the framework of a balanced diet.
Pepper: much more than fiber and low calories
The main component of the pepper is to the water, followed by carbohydrates, which makes it a vegetable with a low calorie contribution. It is a good source of fiber and hardly provides fat. In the pepper we have a considerable source of carotene, such as capsantin, pigment with antioxidant properties, present in those red peppers. Among the minerals, the presence of potassium should be highlighted and, in a lower proportion, magnesium, phosphorus and calcium are present. As for its vitamin content, peppers are very rich in vitamin C, especially red peppers. In particular, it is worth highlighting its content in folates and vitamin E, as well as in provitamin A (which the organism transforms into vitamin A according to its needs), and in less quantity, vitamins of group B, such as B6, B3, B2 and B1. In addition, the pepper should not be missing in a good friction, along with tomato and extra virgin olive oil. Estados para Whatsapp
Pumpkin: a cocktail of vitamins
The main component of the pumpkin is water, followed by carbohydrates and small amounts of fat and protein. With moderate fiber content, its vitamin content is particularly outstanding. It is also worth recalling the discreet presence of folates, followed by vitamin C. We also found vitamins from group B, such as B1, B2 and B6. “The zucchini is a magnificent source of potassium, and it also presents other minerals in small quantities such as magnesium, phosphorus and iron. We can consider it as one of the star vegetables of our greenhouses, increasingly present at the tables of all Europeans,” they say from APROA.
Berenjena: contribution of salts and vitamin C
It highlights its contribution of salts, due to its potassium content, the most abundant mineral in this vegetable, and to a lesser extent phosphorus, calcium, magnesium and iron are found. It contains an intermediate amount of fiber compared to other vegetables while its main vitamin components are folates and vitamin C. It should not be forgotten that water is the main component in the weight of the eggplant, as is the case with many other fruits and vegetables, making it a very suitable vegetable for all diets.
Fresh food “from greenhouse to table”
From Aproa they remember that fruits and vegetables produced in solar greenhouses are very nutritionally beneficial and also for the environment, without forgetting their highest quality and food security. Not in vain, they mature in the plant, not in refrigerated trucks, and arrive in one to two days to the markets, being fresh products, “from greenhouse to table” to the pair that tasty and versatile in the kitchen.
On the other hand, the production under plastic covers stands out for its high efficiency in the use of water and nutrients and contributes to curbing climate change thanks to the “albedo effect”, i.e., the proportion between the luminous energy that incites on a surface and that which is reflected in the atmosphere, contributing to reduce the average temperature of the area in which they are found, conclude from the surface. Asociación de Organización de Produceres de Frutas y Hortalizas de Andalucía (APROA).
CuTE, Cultivating de Taste of Europe, is developed by an international consortium that coordinates the FruitVegetablesEUROPE association and which is also part of APROA, AOPn Tomates et Concombres, AOPnFraiseZGPOiW and INCOFRUIT. The program is funded to 80% by the EU, through the Consumer, Health, Agriculture and Food Agency of the European Commission.
The five vegetables that should be taken this fall to protect health and the planet
According to APROA, tomatoes, cucumbers, pumpkin, peppers or eggplants are some of the fresh, nutritious, healthy and versatile vegetables that should not be m
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