Lettuce Nutrition

Years of nutritional research show that lettuce can play a big role in improving our health. Eating salads, in particular, can have tremendous health benefits for a number of reasons primarily because salads get people to eat more vegetables – something we should all be doing more of.

Nutrition Facts

Looking for nutrition information for lettuce and leafy greens from Arugula to Spring Mix? Use our handy resource to easily determine which greens have the least calories, highest water content and determine how they compare on nutrients.

Aim for Variety

Salads can be made with a variety of ingredients, in addition to lettuce, that might entice those who ‘don’t like’ vegetables to dig in. Adding fruit or nuts to salad greens gives them more flavor, sweetness and texture. And although the addition of salad dressing, cheeses, eggs or meat to salads can add calories and fat, these foods also have nutritional benefits and if the end result is increased consumption of vitamins and antioxidants available in lettuces, a big salad can be a big win! Below are results from just a few of the many studies on lettuce nutrition that show the potential health benefits of eating leafy lettuces and vegetables with links to the peer-reviewed, published studies.

7 Healthy Reasons to Eat Lettuce

#1. Eating one serving of leafy green vegetables per day can help slow cognitive decline.

A 2018 study published in Neurology found that eating one serving per day of green leafy vegetables and foods rich in phylloquinone, lutein, nitrate, folate, α-tocopherol and kaempferol may help to slow cognitive (brain function) decline with aging.

#2. Eating salads is a great way to increase nutrient intake and improve overall diet quality.

A 2019 study published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics found that people who eat salad had higher intakes of fiber, total fat, unsaturated fatty acids, vitamins A, B-6, C, E, K, folate, choline, magnesium, potassium and sodium than those who did not eat salad.

#3. People who regularly eat salads are more likely to meet recommendations for vegetable intake.

Findings from ‘What We Eat in America, National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2011-2014’ found that people who eat salad ate significantly more total vegetables as well as dark green and red/orange vegetables.

#4. Eating salads is associated with above-average blood levels of nutrients and vitamins.

A 2006 study published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association found people who eat salads, raw vegetables and salad dressing had above-average blood levels of folic acid, vitamins C and E, lycopene and alpha- and beta-carotene.

#5. Eating salad prior to a meal can reduce calorie intake and promote weight loss.

Several studies indicate that eating a salad before a meal can reduce caloric intake and other factors such as body weight, waist size, blood triglyceride and cholesterol levels and blood pressure. Read the studies published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, Appetite and the International Journal of Science and Nutrition.

#6. A daily snack of leafy green vegetables, fruit and milk has been shown to help prevent gestational diabetes.

This study from the Journal of Nutrition found that in low-income areas of Mumbai, India, where women have a low intake of vitamins and minerals, show eating more leafy green vegetables, fruit, and/or milk protects developing gestational diabetes during pregnancy.

#7. Consuming vegetable salads and cooked eggs together can enhance carotenoid absorption.

A study from the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that consuming cooked whole eggs with a raw mixed-vegetable salad improved carotenoid absorption from other carotenoid-rich foods. foods. Carotenoids are nutrients that give red, yellow and orange color fruits and vegetables their bright color and also provide health benefits.