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Oak Leaf Lettuce

Oak Leaf Lettuce
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Oak Leaf Lettuce has rounded, scalloped leaves. Available in red and green varieties, both colours have very soft and tender leaves, with a mild flavour. Oakleaf lettuce is available all year round.

Cooking Tips:
For a fresh salad idea, combine green oakleaf lettuce leaves with shredded chicken, pineapple pieces, chopped toasted macadamia nuts and avocado slices. Mix together a little mango chutney, mayonnaise and lime juice then drizzle over salad.For a fresh side dish, combine red oakleaf lettuce leaves with sliced pears and brie cheese. Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar then serve with chicken or beef.

Health benefits of Lettuce:
Lettuce leaves are one of the very low calorie green-vegetables. 100 g fresh greens provide just 15 calories. Nonetheless, they are the store house of many phyto-nutrients that have health promoting and disease prevention properties.

Vitamins in lettuce are plentiful. Fresh leaves are an excellent source of several Vitamin A and beta carotenes. Vitamin A is required for maintaining healthy mucus membranes and skin, and is also essential for vision. Consumption of natural fruits and vegetables rich in flavonoids helps to protect the body from lung and oral cavity cancers.

It is a rich source of vitamin K. Vitamin K has a potential role in the bone metabolism where it thought to increase bone mass by promoting osteotrophic activity in the bone cells. It also has established role in Alzheimer's disease patients by limiting neuronal damage in the brain.

Fresh leaves contain good amounts folates and vitamin C. Folates require for DNA synthesis and therefore, vital in prevention of the neural tube defects in-utero fetus during pregnancy. Vitamin C is a powerful natural antioxidant; regular consumption of foods rich in vitamin C helps the body develop resistance against infectious agents and scavenge harmful, pro-inflammatory free radicals.

Zea-xanthin, an important dietary carotenoid in lettuce, is selectively absorbed into the retinal macula lutea, where it thought to provide antioxidant and filter UV rays falling on the retina. 

It also contains good amounts of minerals like iron, calcium, magnesium, and potassium, which are very essential for body metabolism. Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids that helps controlling heart rate and blood pressure. Manganese is used by the body as a co-factor for the antioxidant enzyme, superoxide dismutase. Copper is required in the production of red blood cells. Iron is essential for red blood cell formation.

It is rich in B-complex group of vitamins like thiamin, vitamin B-6 (pyridoxine), riboflavins.

Regular inclusion of lettuce in salads is known to prevent osteoporosis, iron-deficiency anemia and believed to protect from cardiovascular diseases, ARMD, Alzheimer's disease and cancers.

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