The vegetable called veg is the one with the highest concentration of fibre in all the crops in the world, but veg has also been known to be high in cholesterol.
Now, researchers are looking at why.
Vegetarian food can also have higher amounts of iron, vitamin C, vitamin B6, vitamin D, vitamin K, calcium and manganese than conventional rice.
The study also found that a higher amount of omega-3 fatty acids in veg made it better for you to absorb the vitamin E in your diet.
“The veg plant contains a lot of iron and other minerals, which can make the vegetable a good source of vitamins A, C, E, and K, which is important for people with pre-existing cardiovascular conditions,” says lead author Dr James Dolan from the University of Newcastle in Australia.
“For example, a high amount of iron in vegs is associated with an increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease, and a high vitamin A content is associated more strongly with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease.”
Dr Dolan and his colleagues tested veg for these nutrients in the lab and found that veg was a better source of them.
Veg also had higher levels of vitamin B1, B2, C and D, all of which are good for you, says Dr Dolan.
Veganism is a dietary trend which encourages people to avoid eating meat, dairy and eggs.
It’s also one of the leading causes of preventable deaths in Australia, says lead researcher Professor Ian McBride from the National Institute for Health and Welfare.
“Vegetarians have a higher prevalence of coronary heart disease and a higher incidence of stroke than omnivores,” he says.
“People who are veg eat more vegetables and less meat.”
Dr McBride says people who have heart disease or stroke should also take up vegetarianism, but if they are already veg-eaters, veg may not be as good for them as veganism would be.
Veggies are a good way to get more nutrients from vegetables, Dr McBride adds.
“We do not have any data on whether veg or other grains are a better food source for people who already have heart and vascular disease,” he explains.
“But veg, especially if it is a relatively high fibre, high antioxidant and high fibre vegetable, is a very good source.”
Veg is also known to have other health benefits.
“Veg could be a good supplement for people that are suffering from diabetes,” says Dr McBrides.
“You can get a good amount of fibre from veg in some forms, and if you’re on diabetes, that could also help you lose weight.”
There’s also some evidence that vegetarians may be more likely to be able to enjoy life without medication.
The study found that people who had a vegetarian diet had lower rates of diabetes and were less likely to suffer from the chronic condition.
Dr McBrases says the findings are “very encouraging” but they should not be taken as a reason to switch to a vegan diet.
If you’re not sure what veg means to you, read up on it.