9 vegetables that are healthier for you when cooked

Nine vegetables that are healthier for you when cooked

Raw food diets, including raw veganism, are a relatively new trend. The idea is that the less processed the food, the better. Raw food, on the other hand, is not always healthy. Cooked vegetables are, in fact, more nutritious than raw vegetables. Here are nine examples.


Cells are found in all living organisms, and vital nutrients are sometimes trapped within these cell walls in vegetables. When vegetables are cooked, the cell walls break down, releasing nutrients that are easier for the body to absorb. Asparagus’ cell walls are broken down during cooking, making vitamins A, B9, C, and E more absorbable.


The antioxidant ergothioneine is abundant in mushrooms, and it is released during cooking. Antioxidants aid in the breakdown of “free radicals,” molecules that can cause cell damage, sickness, and ageing.


Spinach is high in iron, magnesium, calcium, and zinc, among other minerals. When spinach is cooked, however, these nutrients are more easily absorbed. This is due to the presence of oxalic acid (a chemical found in many plants) in spinach, which prevents iron and calcium absorption. When spinach is heated, the bound calcium is released, making it easier for the body to absorb.

According to research, boiling spinach retains its folate (B9) levels, which may lower the risk of certain malignancies.


The antioxidant lycopene in tomatoes is considerably increased by cooking, regardless of the method. Lycopene has been linked to a lower risk of a variety of chronic diseases, including cancer and heart disease. The heat that helps to break down the thick cell walls, which contain various vital nutrients, is responsible for the increased lycopene content.

Although boiling tomatoes lowers their vitamin C level by 29%, it increases their lycopene concentration by more than 50% in just 30 minutes.


Beta-carotene, a pigment that the body converts to vitamin A, is more abundant in cooked carrots than in raw carrots. This fat-soluble vitamin helps the immune system, bone formation, and vision.

Cooking carrots with their skins on increases their antioxidant content by more than double. To prevent these nutrients from leaking into the cooking water, boil carrots whole before slicing. It has been discovered that frying carrots reduces the number of carotenoids.

Bell peppers

Bell peppers are high in antioxidants that support the immune system, particularly carotenoids such as beta-carotene, beta-cryptoxanthin, and lutein. Heat breaks down cell membranes, making it easier for your body to absorb carotenoids. When peppers are boiled or steamed, vitamin C is lost because the vitamin can seep out into the water, just like tomatoes. Instead, try roasting them.


Brassica vegetables, such as broccoli, cauliflower, and brussels sprouts, are high in glucosinolates (sulfur-containing phytochemicals) that the body can convert into a variety of cancer-fighting substances. An enzyme called myrosinase must be active in certain veggies for these glucosinolates to be transformed into cancer-fighting chemicals.

According to studies, boiling these vegetables maintains both vitamin C and myrosinase, as well as the cancer-fighting chemicals they contain. This myrosinase can also be activated by chopping broccoli and letting it sit for at least 40 minutes before cooking.

Similarly, when sprouts are cooked, they create indole, a chemical that may lower cancer risk. Cooking sprouts also break down the glucosinolates into chemicals that have anti-cancer effects.

Green beans

When green beans are baked, microwaved, griddled, or even fried, they contain more antioxidants than when they are boiled or pressure cooked.


When kale is briefly cooked, enzymes that inhibit the body from processing the iodine it requires for the thyroid, which helps control your metabolism, are deactivated.

Higher temperatures, longer cooking times, and more water cause more nutrients to be lost in all veggies. Because they leach out of vegetables into the cooking water, water-soluble vitamins (C and several of the B vitamins) are the most unstable nutrients when it comes to cooking. Soak them in water as little as possible, cook them with the least quantity of water possible, and utilise other cooking methods such as steaming or roasting. Also, if you have any leftover cooking water, use it in soups or gravies because it retains all of the nutrients that have been leached.

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