Scientists have ranked vegetables based on their nutritional value for the first time ever. A new study from the US researchers was conducted to identify the top 10 powerhouse fruits and vegetables (PFVs) from 41 nutritionally dense fruits and vegetables. Findings of the study have been published in the Preventing Chronic Disease journal.
The first position was grabbed by watercress with a score of 100. The second place went to Chinese cabbage with 91.99, followed by chard (89.27), beet green (87.08) and spinach (86.43).
It was really surprising to know that the humble broccoli, brussels sprouts, and hipster-favourite kale failed to make even to the top 20. Powerhouse status is given to only those foods that contain more than 10% of the daily recommended intake of 17 different nutrients. Those nutrients included potassium, fibre, protein, calcium, iron, zinc, folate, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, and vitamins A, B6, B12, C, D, E, and K. These nutrients are essential because they play a very important role in preventing chronic diseases.
The scientists ensured that no food should be given high scores based on huge amount of only one nutrient. The study author, Dr Jennifer Di Noia, said the research from William Paterson University has made it possible for the first time to rank fruit and vegetables based on their nutritional value only.
Dr. Di Noia told The Washington Post that scores were completely based on nutrients and that is why berries were not even able to make it to the list, despite the fact nutritionists claim it as the healthiest fruit.
“It’s hoped the list will provide clarity on the nutrient quality of the different foods and help people choose more nutrient-dense items within the powerhouse group”, the study results state.