For Good Health, Eat Your Watercress and Chinese Cabbage…and Forget Onions and Blueberries

Friday, June 13, 2014

It isn’t enough to eat fruits and vegetables to maintain a healthy lifestyle. You have to make sure they’re “powerhouse” fruits and veggies (or PFVs).


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has come up with a list of PFVs to help the public focus on the best produce for good health.


PFVs that ranked highest were those containing the strongest concentrations of 17 qualifying nutrients, according to Jennifer Di Noia, an associate professor of sociology at New Jersey’s William Patterson University and the study’s lead researcher.


Having high amounts of key nutrients has been shown to reduce the risk of chronic illness, such as heart disease and cancer. Those nutrients include potassium, fiber, protein, calcium, iron, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, folate, zinc, and vitamins A, B6, B12, C, D, E, and K.


The highest scoring PFV was watercress, at 100, followed by Chinese cabbage (92), chard (89.3), beet green (87.1), spinach (86.4), chicory (73.4) and leaf lettuce (70.7).


The research examined 47 foods, and all but six (raspberry, tangerine, cranberry, garlic, onion, and blueberry) made the powerhouse list, Di Noia reported.

-Noel Brinkerhoff


To Learn More:

Table 2. Powerhouse Fruits and Vegetables (N = 41), by Ranking of Nutrient Density Scoresa, 2014 (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

USDA Adds Fresh Produce, Yogurt and Tofu to Food Voucher for Poor Program in First Change in 34 Years (by Steve Straehley, AllGov)

FDA Proposes First Major Food Labeling Changes in 22 Years (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov)


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