Leeks are a type of vegetable belonging to the Allium family, including onions, garlic, and scallions.
They are native to the Mediterranean region and have been cultivated for thousands of years.
Leeks have a long, slender white stalk and a dark green leafy top. They have a mild, slightly sweet flavor and a tender, crunchy texture.
Leeks are a highly nutritious food that is rich in a number of essential nutrients. They are an excellent source of vitamin K, which is essential for maintaining healthy bones and supporting blood clotting.
They are also a good source of vitamin C, which is important for maintaining a healthy immune system and promoting healthy skin.
In addition to these nutrients, leeks contain a number of antioxidants, which can help to protect the body against oxidative stress and inflammation.
Leeks Quick Nutrition Facts
Here's a quick nutrition overview for 3.5 ounces (100 grams) of leeks:
- Energy: 61 calories
- Carbs: 14.2 grams
- Sugar: 3.9 grams
- Fiber: 1.8 grams
- Protein: 1.5 grams
- Fat: 0.3 grams
- Saturated Fat: 0.04 grams
Jump to a section where you can learn more about leeks nutrition value, including macronutrients, vitamins, minerals, protein quality, and more.
Health Benefits of Leeks
Thanks to a significant amount of specific vitamins and minerals, leeks could provide several health benefits.
Continue reading to discover the potential benefits of consuming leeks.
May Reduce a Cancer Risk
Vitamin A, also called retinol, acts as an antioxidant and protects the vital organs against damage by free radicals, thus reducing the risk of cancer.
It also plays a key role in supporting the body’s natural defense mechanisms against infections. It primarily works by activating the functions of the immune system.
Vitamin A is also needed for improving vision. The deficiency of this nutrient can result in problems with eyesight, such as nearsightedness, farsightedness, and night blindness.
Moreover, vitamin A can also help us see in dim light.
Vitamin A can help maintain the health and structural integrity of the skin and the mucosal lining of some body organs, especially the nose.
It can help to reduce or delay the appearance of the signs of aging on the skin, such as wrinkles and fine lines, allowing you to look younger.
It also promotes growth and performs functions related to reproduction.
May Support Bone Building
Vitamin K helps the body to synthesize various proteins, which are needed for the building of bones.
It works by improving the activities of a protein called osteocalcin that produces new bone tissue, thus maintaining the strength and density of the bones.
This action of vitamin K can help to reduce the risk of osteopenia and osteoporosis that occur due to the decline in bone mineral density making the bones weak and porous.
Vitamin K is also important for the normal blood clotting processes to occur in the body.
It plays a critical role in the formation of proteins such as prothrombin, which is needed for the clotting of blood.
This can help to arrest bleeding in the event of injuries and accidents and reduce the risk of excessive blood loss and related complications. In newborn babies, it can prevent a serious bleeding condition known as hemorrhagic disease of the newborn.
Vitamin K can also support wound healing mechanisms, thus accelerating the recovery of patients with injuries, ulcers, and other forms of lesions.
They May Boost the Production of DNA and RNA
Folate aids in the production of the body’s genetic material, such as DNA and RNA. It is especially important to ensure that the body is not deprived of this nutrient when tissues and organs are growing rapidly, such as during pregnancy, infancy, and adolescence.
Vitamin B9 or folate plays a key role in cellular division. It can regulate the processes involved in cell division.
This can reduce the risk of cancer that can occur due to the uninhibited division of cells resulting in the formation of a large number of cells that fail to mature completely.
Vitamin B9 plays a key role during pregnancy by regulating the replication of DNA and RNA, thereby supporting the proper growth and development of the fetus.
It can also help in the normal growth and development of children.
Vitamin B9 also works closely with other nutrients, especially vitamin B12, and helps the body make red blood cells by improving the availability of iron.
They May Lower the Risk of Autoimmune Disorders
Manganese is an integral part of the body’s antioxidant mechanisms. It helps in the synthesis of an enzyme called superoxide dismutase, which acts as a powerful antioxidant in the body and prevents oxidative stress linked to the high risk of cancer, autoimmune disorders, and diabetes.
It is a vital nutrient that helps in the formation of connective tissue, blood clotting factors, bones, and reproductive hormones.
Manganese also supports the metabolism of fat and carbohydrate and enhances calcium absorption. It can help with blood sugar regulation, thereby improving glycemic control in patients with diabetes.
It is also needed for normal nerve and brain function. When combined with other nutrients like calcium and zinc, manganese can support the bone formation processes and improve bone mineral density.
This is especially important for postmenopausal women and older men who are at a higher risk of osteoporosis due to the decline in bone mineral density.
It can also reduce inflammation and hence, can be useful as a potential therapeutic agent for the management of inflammatory disorders such as osteoarthritis and inflammatory bowel disease.
Leeks Nutrition Facts
Continue reading to find out the following leeks nutrition information:
- Vitamin Content
- Mineral Content
- Amino Acid Profile
- Fat Breakdown
- Carbohydrate Breakdown
Macronutrients, often called macros, are most commonly used term when it comes to eating a healthy diet or losing weight. There are three types of macronutrients: carbohydrates, proteins, and fats.
Macronutrients provide energy to your body and allows it to function properly. The following table contains the information on leeks macronutrients, while reading further will give you a better understanding on each of these macronutrients.
|Carbohydrate||5% DV||14.2 g|
|Protein||3% DV||1.5 g|
|Fat||0% DV||0.3 g|
Leeks are excellent source of Vitamin A, and Vitamin K.
They also contain a good amount of Vitamin C, Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine), and Vitamin B9 (Folate) and some Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), and Vitamin E.
Here's the full leeks vitamin content per 100g:
|Vitamin A||56% DV||1670 IU|
|Vitamin C||13% DV||12 mg|
|Vitamin D||0% DV||0 µg|
|Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)||5% DV||0.06 mg|
|Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)||2% DV||0.03 mg|
|Vitamin B3 (Niacin)||3% DV||0.4 mg|
|Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)||3% DV||0.14 mg|
|Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine)||14% DV||0.233 mg|
|Vitamin B9 (Folate)||16% DV||64 µg|
|Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)||0% DV||0 µg|
|Vitamin E||6% DV||0.92 mg|
|Vitamin K||39% DV||47 µg|
Leeks are not an excellent source of any particular vitamin.
However, they contain a good amount of Copper, Iron, and Manganese and some Calcium, Magnesium, and Potassium.
Here's the full leeks mineral content per 100g:
|Calcium||5% DV||59 mg|
|Copper||13% DV||0.12 mg|
|Fluoride||0% DV||0 mg|
|Iron||12% DV||2.1 mg|
|Magnesium||7% DV||28 mg|
|Manganese||21% DV||0.481 mg|
|Phosphorus||3% DV||35 mg|
|Potassium||4% DV||180 mg|
|Selenium||2% DV||1 μg|
|Sodium||1% DV||20 mg|
|Zinc||1% DV||0.12 mg|
Protein and Amino Acid Profile
Leeks contain 1.5 g of protein per 100 g, or in other words, leeks provide 2.46 g of protein per 100 kcal.
Similarly to most other plant proteins, protein in leeks contain all nine essential amino acids, however, they are a little bit low in methionine, and valine.
|Histidine OK||3% DV||0.025 g|
|Isoleucine OK||3% DV||0.052 g|
|Leucine OK||3% DV||0.096 g|
|Lysine OK||3% DV||0.078 g|
|Methionine Low||2% DV||0.018 g|
|Phenylalanine OK||4% DV||0.055 g|
|Threonine OK||5% DV||0.063 g|
|Tryptophan OK||4% DV||0.012 g|
|Valine Low||3% DV||0.056 g|
Around 4% of the calories in leeks are from fat. Leeks have 0.3 grams or 0% of recommended daily values per 100g.
Saturated fat and trans fat can increase cholesterol levels and increase the heart disease risk.
Leeks fat content mostly consists of healthy unsaturated fats.
According to FDA, dietary cholesterol should be kept below 300 mg per day. Luckily, leeks is cholesterol free.
Leeks do not contain trans fats. Trans fats should be kept as low as possible.
|Total Fat||0% DV||0.3 g|
|Saturated Fat||0% DV||0.04 g|
|Monounsaturated Fat||do not have a %DV||0.004 g|
|Polyunsaturated Fat||do not have a %DV||0.166 g|
|Trans Fats||do not have a %DV||0 g|
|Cholesterol||0% DV||0 mg|
93% of the calories in leeks come from carbohydrates.
Carbs in leeks are mostly starch (60%), followed by sugars and fiber.
When it comes to sugars, leeks are relatively low in sugar, containing grams of sugar per 100g.
|Total Carbohydrate||5% DV||14.2 g|
|Dietary Fiber||6% DV||1.8 g|
|Sugars||8% DV||3.9 g|
Holy Peas has strict sourcing guidelines and draws only from high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical journals, associations and government institutions. Read more about our process.
Leeks Nutrients, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service
Listing of vitamins, Harvard Health Publishing, Harvard Medical School
Appendix 7. Nutritional goals for age-sex groups based on dietary reference intakes and Dietary Guidelines recommendations. (n.d.).
International tables of glycemic index and glycemic load values 2021: a systematic review
Health Claim Notification for Saturated Fat, Cholesterol, and Trans Fat, and Reduced Risk of Heart Disease
Nutrient Recommendations: Dietary Reference Intakes (DRI), Food and Nutrition Board of the National Academies of Sciences Engineering, and Medicine
Protein And Amino Acid Requirements In Human Nutrition, WHO
Nutrition Facts Labeling RDIs Nutrients, U.S. Food and Drug Administration
Nutrition Facts Labeling DRVs Food Components, U.S. Food and Drug Administration