The Top 5 Health Benefits Of Parsnips

The Top 5 Health Benefits Of Parsnips

Used in culinary and medicinal applications for many years, parsnips are root vegetables that resemble large, white carrots. Parsnips have a long, tapering shape and are close relatives to carrots and parsley, exhibiting a similar nutritional profile to those vegetables. They are nutrient-dense, offering many antioxidant compounds that aid immune function, digestion, and weight loss efforts. 

The antioxidants in parsnips are of great interest to researchers. Antioxidants are compounds that fight free radicals, which contribute to oxidative stress. According to various studies, oxidative stress can increase the risk of many chronic and acute conditions that affect the respiratory and cardiovascular systems. It can also contribute to the development of neurodegenerative disease and cancer. Eating more foods that are rich in antioxidants, then, may help protect against these types of health conditions. 

That means that you should start eating more parsnips! They are rich in furanocoumarins, flavonoids, and polyacetylenes, which exhibit antifungal, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and antidepressant properties. Continue reading to learn more about the health benefits of parsnips

Encourages Healthy Bones

Parsnips contain calcium and magnesium, two minerals that are necessary for bone development. One cup of parsnips provides over 45 milligrams (mg) of magnesium, which equates to about 10% of the recommended daily intake. Magnesium plays a role in the structural formation of your bones, making parsnips a great vegetable to include in your bone health diet. 

Supports Weight Management

Because parsnips are low in calories and high in fiber, they make for an excellent weight loss food. The reason dietitians say they can support weight management efforts is because they keep you full without filling you up with excess calories. One cup of parsnips provides 100 calories and 6.5 grams (g) of fiber. If you are trying to establish a caloric deficit, include parsnips in your meals to increase feelings of fullness. A review of 62 trials with nearly 4,000 participants found that increased fiber intake helped reduce body weight and waist circumference. That is completely separate from calorie restriction efforts!

Enhances Immune Function

One cup of sliced parsnips provided 22.6 mg of vitamin C, which equates to 25% of the recommended daily intake (RDI). Vitamin C is both an antioxidant and micronutrient that helps to enhance immune function by way of several cellular functions. Parsnips also contain quercetin and kaempferol, two phenolic compounds that exhibit anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, and antiviral activity. All of that aids your immune system’s ability to fight off foreign invaders. 

May Reduce The Risk Of Breast Cancer

Researchers note that sufficient fiber intake during your early life (during adolescence and young adulthood) can significantly reduce the risk of breast cancer later in life. According to surveys, most Americans do not consume an adequate amount of fiber per day. Incorporating more parsnips into your diet can increase your fiber intake. Beyond the fiber, parsnips provide lots of antioxidants, which help reduce DNA damage that may increase cancer risk later in life. 

May Calm The Mind

Both carrots and parsnips contain falcarinol, which works to protect against fungal infections. Researchers note that you lose about 70% of falcarinol during the cooking process, but the remaining 30% is available to cross the blood brain barrier, where it can have an almost sedative-like effect. Falcarinol is serotonergic, which means that it influences serotonin (the feel good chemical) in the brain. Animal studies suggest that falcarinol may improve depression- or anxiety-like symptoms, however, it’s too early to know whether or not it has the same effect in humans.



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