As you are discovering what vegetables you love to eat raw, you may wonder what other cooked vegetables can be consumed raw. Although we love raw vegetables and believe they can be the healthiest way to provide you with the nutrition you need to thrive in your life, there are some raw vegetables to avoid.
- Tomatoes: Tomatoes can be a delicious topping on your sandwiches or salads but eating them raw deprives you of vital nutrients. When you cook your tomatoes your body can absorb more lycopene. This is an important cancer-fighting ingredient, so add cooked or stewed tomatoes to your diet where you can.
- Asparagus: There are no harmful effects from eating asparagus raw, but by cooking it you can chew and digest your asparagus easier. Easier digestion means you will be absorbing more of the nutrients present in your asparagus, including some cancer-fighting ingredients.
- Potatoes: Most people would not want to eat a potato raw, but if you ever thought about trying it, skip it. Raw potatoes contain toxins that can cause harm to your body, and their high levels of starch can cause you a great deal of intestinal and digestive discomfort. Always steam, boil, bake, or roast your potatoes before eating to ensure you do not cause harm to yourself.
- Brussel Sprouts: Like other cruciferous vegetables, brussels sprouts can cause gas and bloating when consumed raw. Roast your brussels sprouts for better flavor and an easier time digesting.
- Eggplant: Many popular dishes include eggplant in some form, but never raw. This is because eggplants contain the compound solanine which can prevent the absorption of calcium. It is possible to get solanine poisoning, which can lead to neurological and gastrointestinal problems. Nausea, dizziness, vomiting, and cramping are just some of the symptoms of this poisoning. Be sure to always wash thoroughly before cooking to make this popular vegetable safe to eat.
- Yucca: The roots of the yucca plant are very popular when mashed, fried, or boiled and contain many important nutrients your body needs. Eating them raw, however, can pose a health risk. The leaves of this plant contain cyanide, and the cyanide can make its way into the root. By drying, soaking, rinsing, and cooking yucca as soon as possible after harvesting, this delicious root becomes safe to eat.
- Red Kidney Beans: Red kidney beans are nutrient-dense, but their raw form can be dangerous to humans. They contain a high concentration of a chemical called phytohemagglutinin that can cause severe nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea in humans after ingestion. This chemical is destroyed when your beans are boiled, so be sure to always cook your red kidney beans.
By knowing what raw vegetables to avoid, you can improve your health journey and start adding more nutrients to your diet. Be sure to read up on what the best raw fruits and vegetables to add to your diet are, as well as recipes that will taste great.