Posted by: Stephanie Faris
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From improved memory to better eyesight, lutein has become a popular power nutrient in recent years. But one of the biggest problems with lutein is that it loses its potency once cooked. Research out of Europe shows that if you want to increase your lutein consumption, you should drink spinach smoothies.
One of the best sources of lutein is spinach, which contains the highest amount of the nutrient. The team tried various ways of preparing spinach, including frying, boiling, and steaming it for as long as 90 minutes. At various intervals throughout the cooking process, they studied the level of lutein found in the spinach. They found that for boiling, the more time it spent in the hot water, the less lutein it contained. Frying the spinach wiped out most of the lutein within the first two minutes. Microwaving it seemed to provide more lutein than other cooking methods but in the end, the team concluded that raw was best.
Combining it with ingredients for a smoothie seemed to be the best way to maximize lutein, since the team found that when chopped, spinach releases more lutein. With smoothies, the fat in the dairy products also increases the solubility of the lutein.