Health Benefits of Spinach for People who Suffer from CIDP
Spinach is a superfood and has a variety of benefits for people who suffer from CIDP.
By Shiraz Abbas
We previously wrote on the powerful benefits of kale for people who suffer from CIDP. But kale isn’t the only leafy green super food that can potentially help with CIDP. There are other greens but then there is spinach which stands out.
How can spinach help?
First, spinach is loaded with magnesium and potassium. Each cup of cooked spinach contains about 839 milligrams which is much more than a banana (around 500 mg). Potassium is very important for autoimmune and inflammatory health. We previously wrote on the link between low potassium and CIDP:
Anecdotal evidence also shows that inflammatory autoimmune diseases like CIDP may be exacerbated by low potassium. Studies have shown that patients with inflammatory autoimmune diseases like RA who take higher doses of potassium (6000mg) a day for just a bit over three weeks saw a 33% reduction in pain. In fact, another study showed that using a potassium topical cream helped reduce pain in RA patients.
A person needs between 4200 and 4700 mg of potassium a day. Most supplements only carry minimal amounts of potassium and hence not helping people with low potassium. There are, however, foods that are rich in potassium that can make up for the deficiency. In fact, foods are always a better choice as they interact with other elements in the food to optimize its role in the body.
Spinach is also loaded with tons of antioxidants and vitamin Bs that may help with CIDP. Live Science writes:
The George Mateljan Foundation’s analysis of spinach’s nutritional properties placed it at the top of their nutrient-rich food list. “Spinach is an excellent source of vitamin K, vitamin A (in the form of carotenoids), manganese, folate … copper, vitamin B2, vitamin B6, vitamin E, calcium … and vitamin C,” according to the foundation’s website World’s Healthiest Foods. Spinach’s calcium, however, cannot be as easily absorbed as calcium from dairy, and you should only expect to absorb about 10 percent of it.
Spinach is also a very good source of zinc, dietary fiber, phosphorus, vitamin B1 and choline. It contains a unique and beneficial mixture of phytonutrients, as well as anti-oxidants, flavonoids and carotenoids.
Finally, spinach is also very low in calories and can help in weight loss. Maintaining proper weight is important for managing CIDP inflammation and pain as the link between obesity and autoimmune diseases is pretty strong.
Next time you go to the market, make sure to grab yourself a bag of spinach. You can eat it raw or cooked, both are beneficial.
Shiraz Abbas is the founder and manager of the CIDP Neuropathy Support Group. He is also one of the main community educators of IVIG therapy. He resides in Fresno, California. Shiraz can be contacted through our free CIDP advice service at 1-855-782-0574.