What’s the healthiest way to eat a vegetable?

Vegetables are an incredibly healthy source of fuel—nutrient-packed and light on the calories. There’s no question about that. And they’re jam-packed with essential vitamins. But like any food, there’s perhaps a million ways one can eat them: raw, steamed, baked, and even fried. But some enthusiasts claim that the process of cooking vegetables causes them to lose a portion of their nutritious value. Is this true? What’s the most nutritious way to eat your veggies?

The short answer is that it depends widely on both the vegetable and the cooking method. First of all, it’s important to remember that as soon as a vegetable is taken off its stem, it immediately starts to lose some of its nutritional value. That’s because vegetables get their nutrients directly from the plant or tree from which they were taken. Once this supply is gone, the plucked vegetables essentially use themselves as a fuel source until they shrivel into undesirable (and sometimes unsafe) edibles.


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