A Nutritionist at the Wuse General Hospital, Abuja, Hajiya Jummai Abdul, on Wednesday said consumption of lettuce could reduce the risk of heart disease.
Abdul told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that lettuce was good for digestion and promoted liver health, among others.
She said it was also effective for the treatment of various diseases.
“Lettuce is exceptionally low in calories and contains over 90 per cent water.
“Research shows that it helps to reduce the risk of cancer and may ease nervous insomnia,’’ she said.
According to Abdul, lettuce leaves are rich in foliate and contained useful amounts of beta-carotene as well as vitamin C.
Abdul also said that fresh leaves contained good amount of foliates and vitamin C which were vital in the prevention of neural tube defect during pregnancy.
“Lettuce has potassium and certain phytochemicals that act as mild sedative, especially when eaten with bread.
“Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids that helps in controlling heart rate and blood pressure,’’ she said.
She explained that fresh leaves were excellent sources of several vitamin A and beta carotene required for maintaining healthy mucus membranes, skin and also essential for vision.
Abdul said that consumption of natural fruits and vegetables rich in flavonoids helped to protect the body from lung and oral cavity cancers.
She also said that lettuce contained good amount of minerals such as iron, calcium, magnesium essential for body metabolism.
Abdul added that lettuce was rich in B complex group of vitamins, including thiamin, vitamin B-6, pyridoxine and riboflavin.
She said that lettuce was a rich source of vitamin K which had a potential role in the bone metabolism and increases bone mass..
She, however, advised the public that regular inclusion of lettuce in salads was ideal to prevent osteoporosis, iron-deficiency and anaemia, which also reduced the risk of cardiovascular diseases and cancers.(NAN)