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10 Powerful Advantages of Eating Lettuce

Interesting Facts and History:

  • Lettuce is part of the daisy and thistle family!
  • Lettuce was served on the tables of the Persian kings – 6th century B.C
  • The leaf was revered by the Greeks and Romans for basic food and medicine (sleep induction).
  • Emperor Caesar Augustus built a statue praising lettuce as he believed eating it had cured him of an illness!
  • The Chinese consider lettuce good luck and eat it on special occasions.
  • Lettuce was introduced to North America by none other than Christopher Columbus.
  • Wild lettuce is common around the globe.

Types of Lettuce:

1. Romaine – This is your classic Greek salad. Sweet and crunchy.

2. Crisphead – Iceberg.  White on the inside. Crisp texture and mild taste.

3. Butterhead – Boston and Bibb. Large green leaves that are soft and sweet.

4. Red and Green Leaf –  Delicate taste and leaves.

Arugula, watercress, and mizuna are NOT classified as lettuce, but are often mixed with lettuce in salads. They have similar nutritional benefits.

My personal favorite lettuce is romaine. I love the taste and nutrition, but it is also much less likely to spoil than some of the others. I always have many bags of organic romaine heads in my fridge. I also keep a tub of organic field green or spring mix, but much less since it easily spoils.

Lettuce Cautions:

Unless you buy organic, lettuce can contain a lot of toxins and pesticides. This is because:

  • It has a high surface to weight ratio.
  • Bugs and microorganisms love those tender lettuce leaves just as much as you.

Therefore: Lettuce is on the list of Dirty Dozen – those foods you SHOULD buy organic. Discover the other 11 foods here:  12 Foods You Must Eat Organic.

Luckily organic lettuce is becoming more and more available.

Lettuce Recipes:

Perfect Vegetable Juice: Juicing is the perfect food for those with poor digestion and significant health challenges.

Green Raspberry Smoothie/Pudding: Doubles as a healthy smoothie or a tasty dessert.

Green Nori Salad: Enjoy the benefits of lettuce plus the nutritional punch from sea vegetables.

Alkalizing Mixed Green Salad: This is your basic wonderful salad with lots of tastes and textures.

Related
8 Surprising Health Facts About Spinach
Cauliflower Curry With Spinach & Ginger (or Gobi Masala)
5 Seaweeds That Enrich Your Diet

Read more: Diet & Nutrition, Health

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Diana Herrington

Diana Herrington turned a debilitating health crisis into a passion for helping others with healthy, sugar-free, gluten-free, eating and cooking. After testing and researching every possible healthy therapy on her delicate system she has developed simple, powerful principles which she shares in her recent book Eating Green and Lean, and as host to Care2 groups: Healthy Living Network and Healthy Cooking. She is the head chef at Real Food for Life, where she shares recipes and tips. Sign up for the Real Food for Life weekly newsletter or catch her on Facebook or Twitter (@DancinginLife).

80 comments

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7:59AM PDT on Apr 7, 2014

Glad to have read this article as I have been on a high salad diet to loose weight and it is working but I also need more iron because I am prone to anaemia and I now know to pick romaine above iceburg. It is not easy when you are told you need to loose weight but need to eat more iron. I felt as though it were a contradiction

3:20PM PST on Jan 26, 2014

Good to know, love lettuce

2:38AM PST on Nov 16, 2013

thats amazing

2:33AM PDT on May 27, 2013

Something new to learn about lettuce. Wonderful article, thanks you!

7:07AM PDT on Apr 13, 2013

Thank you for sharing...

3:59PM PDT on Apr 2, 2013

Thankyou, very interesting about the humble lettuce.

8:37AM PDT on Apr 2, 2013

Thanks for the great info, some things I didnt know!

8:43AM PDT on Mar 31, 2013

Lettuce drizzled with oil and a twist or two of pink salt is a perfect snack to me! Yum! Love it!

4:36AM PDT on Mar 31, 2013

I love lettuce, but had no idea it could help sleep. I'm off to eat a lettuce sandwich right now.

11:32PM PDT on Mar 28, 2013

Thank you! I had no idea lettuce was so beneficial!

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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