January 31

Watercress: Benefits, Nutritional Value, Ways to Use & Side Effects

By Fitness Blog

January 31, 2022

Watercress: Benefits, Nutritional Value, Ways to Use & Side Effects HealthifyMe Blog HealthifyMe Blog – The definitive guide to weight loss, fitness and living a healthier life.

Considered one of many oldest leaves consumed by people, the watercress is darkish inexperienced and has a light peppery flavour with a bitter tang. It belongs to the household of unique cabbage, broccoli and kale. The herb is gaining its place amongst the superfoods due to its excessive nutrient content material. 

The watercress leaf has a spicy style. Therefore, it's typically used as garnish over salads, in sandwiches or diluted with vinegar to create a mix of Italian flavours. You can eat uncooked watercress. In addition, every a part of it's edible, together with leaf, stem, and flower. Although its roots won't style dangerous, you need to steer clear of its consumption. 

Nutritional Value of Watercress

One hundred grams of watercress comprises:

  • Calories: 11kCal
  • Fats: 0.1g
  • Carbohydrates: 1g
  • Proteins: 2.3g
  • Calcium: 120mg
  • Potassium: 330mg
  • Magnesium: 21mg
  • Iron: 0.2mg
  • Sodium: 41mg

10 Health Benefits of Watercress

1. Improves Eyesight

Watercress is wealthy in lutein and zeaxanthin; these are carotenoids with antioxidant properties. According to research, these two carotenoids are important parts for eye well being. They represent the first pigments discovered within the yellow spot, which defend the macula from harm by blue gentle, enhance visible acuity, and scavenge dangerous reactive oxygen species. In addition, they assist cut back the chance of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and cataracts. 

Lutein and zeaxanthin additionally present properties that assist decrease the chance of creating age-related macular degeneration and cataracts. In addition, the vitamin C content material in watercress additionally helps to scale back the possibilities of creating cataracts.

2. Boosts Immunity

Watercress comprises extremely excessive quantities of vitamin C. It has as much as 15mg of vitamin C per cup, about 20% of beneficial every day consumption (RDI). Several studies recommend that vitamin C is a micronutrient that helps varied mobile capabilities of the immune system. In addition, it helps the pores and skin barrier towards pathogens.

Vitamin C additionally acts as an antioxidant and helps to scale back oxidative stress. The oxidative stress by free radicals binds with the free-flowing oxygen within the physique and prevents the wholesome cells from getting contemporary oxygen. Antioxidants eradicate these free radicals and forestall oxidative stress.

3. Protects Against Osteoporosis

Some important minerals essential for bone well being are calcium, potassium, magnesium and phosphorus. Calcium is the constructing block to your complete skeletal construction. However, vitamin Ok and potassium additionally play an important position in sustaining bone well being. 

Vitamin Ok is part of a protein referred to as osteocalcin, which makes up the bone tissue and regulates bone turnover. According to a study, individuals with the best consumption of vitamin Ok had been 35% much less liable to anticipating a hip fracture than individuals with poor vitamin Ok consumption.

4. Lowers Cholesterol Level

One of the numerous watercress’s advantages is that it aids in decreasing levels of cholesterol. Including watercress in your food regimen can cut back triglyceride ranges considerably. High triglyceride ranges are accountable for elevated ldl cholesterol.

According to research, watercress additionally reduces low-density lipoproteins (LDLs), which is dangerous ldl cholesterol and will increase high-density lipoproteins (HDLs), the nice ldl cholesterol.

5. Lowers Blood Pressure

Like every other leafy vegetable, watercress comprises naturally occurring dietary nitrates. Nitric oxide is a vital compound in regulating vascular capabilities. A study demonstrates that individuals who eat nitrate dietary supplements or nitrate dense meals have low blood strain, suggesting that nitrate can positively management hypertension.

Watercress can also be wealthy in potassium which can assist decrease blood strain by balancing out the results of sodium. It additionally relaxes the blood vessels' partitions and permits straightforward blood movement with out restriction or cramping.

6. Prevents Cancer

Watercress comprises excessive ranges of phytochemicals. These phytochemicals cut back the chance of creating most cancers. As per studies, compounds like glucosinolates in watercress have anticancer results. In addition, it comprises isothiocyanates like sulforaphane and phenethyl isothiocyanate. They inactivate carcinogenic chemical substances and block the uncontrolled development of tumours. As a consequence, they defend the wholesome cells towards cancer.

7. Lowers the Risk of Chronic Diseases

Watercress is filled with antioxidant compounds that assist to guard wholesome cells from harm brought on by free radicals. It also can assist to reverse a few of the already triggered harm.

Free radicals trigger oxidative stress, resulting in many persistent sicknesses, like diabetes, cardiovascular problems and even most cancers. Watercress has over 40 flavonoids (antioxidants) and may neutralise free radicals.

8. Enhance Athletic Performance

Watercress comprises excessive quantities of dietary nitrates. Nitrates assist calm down the blood vessels and improve the quantity of nitric oxide within the blood. As per studies, nitric oxide (NO) could enhance train efficiency. In addition, dietary nitrates can assist decrease resting blood strain. As a consequence, it reduces the quantity of oxygen you want throughout train. Hence, it might improve train tolerance.

9. Assist in Weight Loss

Watercress is likely one of the most nutrient-dense meals. It has advantages for weight administration and weight reduction as nicely. One cup of watercress has minimal energy however is filled with important vitamins like nutritional vitamins and micronutrients. Low-calorie greens are extremely efficient for weight reduction, and you need to add them to your food regimen. Watercress can also be very versatile, so it's straightforward to include it into your common dishes.

10. Promotes Healthy Pregnancy

Watercress is wealthy in folate. As per research, It is an important nutrient for pregnant ladies. Folate ensures the wholesome improvement of the foetus or the embryo. Folate deficiency can result in abnormalities within the foetus and even trigger issues for the mom. Having a folate-rich food regimen also can cut back the possibilities of creating anaemia.

Ways to Use Watercress

Watercress has some medicinal utilization. However, there may be not sufficient proof or analysis to help the effectiveness of watercress for these makes use of. But you should utilize it to relax particular signs associated to cough, bronchitis, irritation, flu and constipation.

Watercress is majorly utilized in cooking and has a bitter-tangy style to it. However, a standard method to make use of watercress is usually a meals dressing. 

  • You can add the watercress leaves to your leafy salads, some cherry tomatoes and different inexperienced greens, toss it with some olive oil and your favorite dressing. 
  • You may even substitute spinach or lettuce with watercress so as to add some change to your every day salad.
  • Furthermore, you should utilize the watercress to make Italian vinegar dressing by including some finely chopped watercress leaves to your chilli vinegar. Finally, you'll be able to get pleasure from it with some nachos. 
  • You also can add some watercress leaves to mayonnaise and use it to your wraps and sandwich. That provides it a special minty contemporary flavour.

Watercress: Healthy Recipe

Watercress Curry 

Benefits of Watercress: The Oldest Leaves Consumed by Humans- HealthifyMe
  • Preparation Time: 25min
  • Servings: 2


  • Watercress: 660 g
  • Garlic cloves: 4
  • Dried chilli: 1 tsp
  • Onion (chopped): 1
  • Potatoes: 2
  • Water: 100 ml
  • Salt (to style)
  • Oil: 1 tbsp


  1. Add some oil to a pan and put the onions
  2. Fry the onions until they're gentle and golden
  3. Add within the garlic and chilli flakes
  4. Fry the substances for 1-2 minutes
  5. Add the chopped potatoes, add some water, and go away it to prepare dinner for about 12-Quarter-hour.
  6. Add the watercress and placed on a lid, and let it prepare dinner for 10 min
  7. Once all of the water is dried, take away it from the flame and serve it with rice.

Watercress: Possible Side Effects and Precautions

  • You mustn't instantly start consuming vitamin Ok wealthy meals, like watercress if you happen to take blood thinners. Vitamin Ok performs a significant position in blood clotting. 
  • Watercress is excessive in nitric oxide and nitrate containing vegetable juice could accumulate micro organism and contaminate the juice. Therefore, you need to retailer watercress juice correctly.
  • A excessive consumption of cruciferous greens like watercress could trigger a lower in thyroid hormone perform. Therefore, it's higher to eat a balanced food regimen than to focus on particular person meals.
  • Watercress is probably going unsafe throughout being pregnant. It would possibly begin menstruation and trigger a miscarriage. So it's greatest to keep away from use. 
  • There isn't sufficient proof to know if watercress is secure to make use of when breastfeeding. So, keep on the secure facet and keep away from use.
  • Watercress is unsafe to be used as a drugs in youngsters, particularly in these youthful than 4 years outdated.
  • Avoid utilizing watercress you probably have abdomen or intestinal ulcers. It could worsen the pre-existing situation.
  • Don't use watercress you probably have kidney illness. It interacts with the drugs and should trigger hurt. Also, watercress comprises oxalates that stimulate the formation of kidney stones. 

The Bottom Line

Watercress is a powerhouse vegetable and comprises many important nutritional vitamins, minerals and micronutrients and is extraordinarily low in energy. In addition, it has a number of antioxidants which may forestall many persistent illnesses and a number of other varieties of most cancers. It can also be a scrumptious addition to your meals, and you should utilize it to modify up lettuce or spinach. Although it is probably not the most well-liked vegetable, it is likely one of the most nutritious ones.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the advantage of watercress?

A: Watercress is wealthy in important vitamins that our physique requires for wholesome functioning. It additionally comprises vitamin Ok, which is great for bone well being. Additionally, vitamin C in it helps to maintain the immune system robust.

Q: Who mustn't eat watercress?

A: If you've got abdomen ulcers or intestinal ulcers, you shouldn't eat watercress as it might worsen the pre-existing situation. It could trigger some severe points in being pregnant as nicely. Hence pregnant ladies ought to keep away from it too.

Q: Is watercress a superfood?

A: Yes, watercress is a superfood as a result of it has greater than 40 important vitamins. In addition, it is filled with varied nutritional vitamins and antioxidants, which have improbable well being advantages.

Q: Is watercress fit for human consumption?

A: Yes, watercress is a fairly secure vegetable to eat. You may even substitute it to your spinach or cabbage for a special tangy flavour. It is wealthy in a number of very important vitamins and has low energy. You can get all of the required vitamins with out growing any important weight by consuming watercress. 

Q: What occurs if you happen to eat watercress every single day?

A: There is not any hurt in consuming watercress every single day. It can assist overcome vitamin Ok and C deficiency if consumed often in enough quantities.

Q: Is watercress dangerous for kidney illness?

A: Yes. You mustn't combine watercress with kidney illness treatment because the interplay between the 2 might be harmful. In addition, it will possibly worsen the pre-existing situation. Watercress comprises oxalates that stimulate the formation of kidney stones. 

Q: Is watercress good for the liver?

A: Yes, watercress can assist to detoxify the physique and liver cells. It helps in liver restore because it has many antioxidants in it.

Q: Which is more healthy, spinach or watercress?

A: Watercress is a more sensible choice in case you are attempting to handle your weight because it has fewer energy than spinach. Other than that, each are wealthy in nutritional vitamins and minerals and comprise many antioxidants.

Q: Which is more healthy: parsley or watercress?

A: Parsley has greater ranges of vitamin Ok, C, folate, vitamin A, zinc and magnesium. That makes it a lot more healthy than watercress.

Q: Is watercress a herb?

A: It belongs to the Brassicaceae household of greens. In some areas, individuals contemplate watercress an aquatic herb, whereas others contemplate it a weed. 

Q: Is it fit for human consumption uncooked watercress?

A: Yes, it's fit for human consumption uncooked watercress. It has many vitamins that are warmth delicate and has the best dietary worth when consumed uncooked.

Q: What does watercress do to your physique?

A: It can assist reverse oxidative harm brought on by the free radicals due to its antioxidant properties. That helps forestall cell harm. Moreover, it's low in energy. So it’s useful for individuals attempting to reduce weight. It’s additionally good for sustaining a wholesome blood strain degree. 

Q: How a lot watercress must you eat in a day?

A: You can have about 34g of watercress every day to fulfil the physique's nutrient necessities.

Q: Can you eat the stems of the watercress?

A: Yes, you'll be able to eat a watercress stem. However, if it has a thick stem, it's suggested that you just take away it. Other than that, it's secure to eat. The solely a part of the watercress plant that you need to chorus from consuming is the roots.

The publish Watercress: Benefits, Nutritional Value, Ways to Use & Side Effects appeared first on HealthifyMe Blog.

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