6 Top Reasons why your Children should eat more Leeks
Say goodbye to coughs and colds. Leeks belong to the Allium genus which includes garlic, shallots and onions. Rich in sulphur containing compounds such as allicin which are known for their anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-fungal properties. They also contain plenty of vitamin C and zinc - two essential nutrients for a healthy immune system.
Various studies have shown that a low intake of fruits and vegetables has been linked to an increase risk of asthma. Asthma is an inflammatory condition affecting 1.1 million children (1 in 11) in the UK. Leeks contain an array of anti-oxidants including kaempferol, a flavonol shown to help lower inflammation in the body and reduce the risk of many health conditions linked to oxidative stress and chronic low-level inflammation.
If your children are constantly tired and struggling to get through the day, then they may be low in iron or anaemic. Leeks are a useful source of iron, copper and B vitamins including folate which are vital for the production of red blood cells and haemoglobin.
As haemoglobin in the red blood cells carries oxygen around the body, insufficient levels can affect both mental and physical performance and contribute to fatigue. Leeks also contain a number of vitamins and minerals essential for energy production including magnesium, niacin, riboflavin and thiamine. Consume leeks regularly to keep your energy levels high.
A great source of fibre, leeks help support healthy digestion, reducing the risk of constipation. Fibre also keeps you feeling fuller for longer preventing those episodes of 'hanger' - where your blood sugar dips making you feel moody and irritable. Leeks are rich in a special prebiotic fibre known as inulin which provides food for our beneficial gut bacteria which in turn helps lower inflammation, boost immune function and even improve mood.
Leeks are excellent sources of antioxidants that fight damaging -free radicals. One leek (about 89g) contains a third of your daily requirements of Vitamin A an antioxidant that helps support healthy vision together with carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin.
Exams, pressures at school can all cause our children to feel stressed or anxious from time to time. Leeks are rich in B vitamins needed for healthy adrenal function which is involved in our stress response. They also contain potassium and magnesium which can help calm the nervous system and muscles making it easier for your children to relax and unwind.
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