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Leek is a vegetable from Allium family and closely related to garlic and onion. One Leek. Canadian Academy of Sports Nutritioncup of chopped leek weighs about 90 grams and provides 13 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber and 1 gram of protein.

Average calories: 56 per one cup, chopped.

Leek: one cup, chopped












Vitamins found in higher amounts: vitamins A, K, C, B9, B6 and E.

Minerals found in higher amounts: manganese, iron, magnesium and potassium.

Phytonutrients found in higher amounts and their health benefits: the phytochemicals in leeks are carotenoids (beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin), flavonoids (especially kaempferol and quercetin), polyphenols (especially gallic acid), allicin, alliin, sulforaphane, isothiocynates, and chlorophyllin.

Carotenoids are antioxidants with protective effects on the eyes and promote healthy vision. They may also show protective activities against the lungs and bladder cancers

Flavonoids and polyphenols have anti-inflammatory, cancer-preventing, anti-oxidative, cardioprotective, and immune system-enhancing properties.

Allicin and alliin, also found in garlic, are sulfur-containing phytochemicals in leeks. They are natural antibiotics that have antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, and anti-thrombotic properties, and reduce risk of atherosclerosis.

Sulforaphane can inhibit the growth of Helicobacter Pylori, a microbe responsible for peptic ulcer and stomach upset. Sulforaphane is also found in kale, Bok Choy, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, collards, kohlrabi, mustard, turnip, radish, arugula, and watercress.

Isothiocyanates induce apoptosis (programmed cell death) in certain cancers. However, the downside of isothiocyanides is that they interfere with uptake of iodine, leading to goiter (enlargement of thyroid gland). Isothiocyanates can enhance liver detoxification by stimulating both phase I and phase II of detoxification process.

Chlorophyllin is derived from chlorophyll, a green pigment in green leafy vegetables and vital in photosynthesis. Chlorophyllin is able to bind carcinogens, demonstrating anti-cancer activity.