Malabar spinach

Malabar spinach (Basella alba) , also known as Basella rubra Basella oleracea Basella lucida, is scientifically classified as Kingdom: Plantae Clade: Angiosperms Clade: Eudicots Order: Caryophyllales Family: Basellaceae Genus: Basella Species: B. alba.

Basella alba is an edible perennial vine in the family Basellaceae. It is found in tropical Asia and Africa where it is widely used as a leaf vegetable. Malabar spinach (Basella alba or Basella rubra) is not a true spinach, but rather a climbing vine in a class by itself. Other common names include Vine Spinach, Red Vine Spinach, Creeping Spinach, and Ceylon Spinach. Even though it’s not a true spinach, it has the same taste.

Health Benefits

Malabar spinach is high in Vitamin A (100 grams contains roughly 8,000 units), Vitamin C, iron, and calcium. It has a high amount of protein for a plant and is also a good source of magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium. Another good reason to eat malabar spinach is that it has a good amount of antioxidants, particularly beta carotene and lutein, those naturally occurring chemicals that help keep your cells from aging. Rubra seems to be slightly higher in antioxidants, probably due to the purple color.

Nutrient Facts

Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
Energy   79kj
Dietary fiber   N/A
Carbohydrates   3.4g
Sugars   N/A
Fat   0.3g
Protein   1.8g
Calcium 11% 109mg
Copper 0%  0mg
Iron 9% 1.2mg
Magnesium 18% 65mg
Manganese 35% 0.735mg
Phosphorus 7% 52mg
Potassium 11% 510mg
Sodium 0%  0mg
Zinc 5%  0.43mg
Vitamin A IU % 0mg
Vitamin A equivalent 50% 400mg
Beta-Carotene 0% 0mg
B1 - Thiamine 4% 0.05mg
B2 - Riboflavin 13% 0.155mg
B3 - Niacin 3% 0.5mg
B5 - Pantothenic acid 0% 0mg
B6 - Vitamin 18% 0.24mg
B9 - Folate 35% 140mg
Vitamin C 123% 102mg
Vitamin E 0% 0mg
Vitamin K 0% 0mg
Choline 0% 0mg
Betaine   0mg
Other constituents    
Water   0
Fluoride   0

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