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Articles Fitness Nutrition

The Nutrition of Eggplant

Eggplant is so versatile that it can be cooked in many different ways--eggplant omelet, eggplant parmigiana, steamed eggplants and the list goes on. Delicious as a main meal and as a side dish, there's nothing in an eggplant that is difficult to like. Aside from its great taste, it also has many health benefits.

1. Calorie Content

If you're looking for a filling food with no impact on your waistline, then a high-carbohydrate, low-calorie eggplant is definitely worth a try. A cup of cooked eggplant has 35 calories and 89% of which is from carbohydrates. Calories from protein and fat are at 6% and 5% respectively.

2. High in Carbohydrates

The total carbohydrate content of a cup of cooked eggplant is almost 3% of the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for carbohydrates. Carbohydrates from dietary fiber are at an amazing 2.5 grams which is 10% of the RDA for fiber. What is great about this is that, not only are you getting the energy you need to sustain you throughout the day, but you are also giving your body the help it needs for good digestion.

On the downside, most of the carbohydrate contents of eggplant is from sugar (32 grams/cup of cooked eggplant). This, however, should not scare you in making eggplant a part of your diet. For as long as you're eating in moderation, it should not be a problem.

3. Low in Fat, Cholesterol and Sodium

Aside from low calories, another thing that makes eggplant a "great bang for the buck" is its low saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium content. These 3 are the contents in food that experts advise to be consumed at a minimum. High levels of these are linked to several illnesses. With eggplant, this should be the least of your worries.

4. Contains Fatty Acids

Another great thing to rave about eggplant is its "good fats" content. Omega-3 and omega-6, also known as essential fatty acids (and rightfully so), are present in eggplants. They are known for their role in promoting proper brain function, cardiovascular and cancer prevention, and many more.

5. Vitamin Content

The best way to describe the vitamin content of eggplant is "a little of everything." There is not one vitamin that's above 5% of RDA per serving size of a cup. The closest is Thiamin at 5%, followed closely by vitamin B6 and vitamin K. The rest of the vitamins found in small amounts are vitamins A, C, E, riboflavin, niacin, folate and panthotenic acid.

6. Mineral Content

The mineral that is most abundant in eggplant is manganese. This mineral is best known for its function in fat and carbohydrate metabolism. It is also important in proper brain function. Other minerals present in eggplant are copper, potassium and magnesium. Small amounts of calcium, iron, phosphorus and zinc can also be found in eggplant.

Overall, eggplant is ideal for weight loss. By eating eggplants you're able to get some of the nutrients that your body needs--all at a low calorie cost.

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