Leafy green vegetables are probably the best vegetables for obtaining vitamins, iron, and minerals. One green leafy vegetable that contains some of these benefits as well as antioxidants is watercress.
Watercress is a good choice of vegetable after a strenuous workout. It is very important to increase the levels of antioxidants after the body has sustained stress and fatigue. If the exerciser is not mindful of replacing lost antioxidants and nutrients as well as lost electrolytes, damage can occur within the body’s DNA.
The body’s DNA can be broken down by free radicals. Free radicals are harmful substances that accumulate from continuous hard exercise. However, researchers in Edinburgh found that watercress eaten in small portions helps the body produce higher levels of antioxidants that fight off free radicals and enhance the benefits of exercise.
It was found that DNA damage occurred more often in those subjects who did not eat watercress than those subjects who did eat watercress. The watercress was remarkably effective when eaten as soon as two hours before exercise. The effects of the watercress eaten after only two hours were the same as the effects of watercress that was eaten for a solid eight weeks.