Maximizing Lutein in Green Smoothies
Photo by 13MoonsPublishingServices.com
Research indicates that lutein is essential for eye health, suppresses inflammation and offers cardiovascular health benefits. Because the human body cannot make this powerful antioxidant, it is important to include it in the diet by eating dark, leafy vegetables, such as spinach and kale.
A new study in the journal Nutrients has found that coconut milk is the most effective plant-based milk to liberate lutein from spinach in green smoothies. The scientists from Linköping University, in Sweden, tested 14 liquids, and only four increased lutein liberation in spinach smoothies. Compared to blending spinach with water alone, coconut milk without additives was found to improve lutein liberation by 42 percent. Improved lutein liberation was found with high-fat cow’s milk (36 percent), medium-fat cow’s milk (30 percent) and coconut milk with additives (25 percent). Researchers also noted that soy milk with and without additives actually reduced lutein liberation by 40 percent and 61 percent, respectively.