12/2018 Update: Iceberg lettuce is still safe to eat. Romaine lettuce is slowly making its way back into stores – but the CDC says pay attention to where it’s grown and avoid (romaine) unless it’s grown OUTSIDE of the central coast of Northern & Central California.
Inside: You may have heard (or thought) that iceberg lettuce has no nutritional value and isn’t worth eating. The following may give you a different outlook.
I remember being a kid and eating salads, burgers, etc. with only ONE kind of lettuce all around… iceberg lettuce.
Yep, good ‘ole iceberg with its crunchy, moist goodness.
Then, I got older. I got more into nutrition & healthy eating and all of a sudden – I found myself buying green leaf lettuce, romaine lettuce, red leaf lettuce and baby greens. And poor little lonely iceberg got no more attention from the King household.
Why We Ditched The ‘Berg’
Somewhere, somehow we were led to believe that iceberg lettuce had absolutely NO nutritional value whatsoever.
It was implied that eating iceberg lettuce was like eating… air, basically. So I stopped buying it, figuring it was a waste of money.
Heck, some people even discredit lettuce, period. In fact, the reason I’m writing this blog post article in the first place is because I saw a recipe once and the author said…
“I replaced the lettuce” in the recipe with spinach because lettuce has no nutritional value”.
Although this person said, “lettuce” in general and not just one specific type of lettuce; I figured I’d write about iceberg lettuce in particular because:
a.) part of me believes the author’s statement was made out of ignorance to other types of darker green lettuces and…
b.) iceberg is the lettuce that seems to get the most flack and the least amount of kudos.
Our Return To The ‘Berg
I’ve started back buying iceberg lettuce (in addition to my other lettuces & greens) after having done more research on it and discovering some things about it – not to mention the fact that my daughter LOVES it, and getting her to eat ANY lettuce is a great feat!
A Few Reasons To Take Another Look At These Little White-Green Heads:
- Iceberg lettuce DOES have nutritional value. Perhaps not a whole heck of a lot, but some. The following nutritional information is straight off of the packaging of a head of lettuce I purchased once…
- Fiber – 4%
- Vitamin A – 9%
- Vitamin C – 4%
- Calcium – 2%
- Iron – 2%
- Protein – 1%
- Trace amounts of potassium, iron, calcium, magnesium and phosphorous, folate and Vitamins K
- It is a low-calorie food – only 14 calories per 100 grams
- It contains 0 grams of fat
- Iceberg lettuce is cholesterol-free
- It’s low in sodium
- Slightly sweet iceberg lettuce is cool & refreshing and has a crispness to it that other lettuces just can’t compare with! And if nothing else…
- It is HIGH in water content – 96% water to be exact, according to the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture! (www.ca.uky.edu) Some people complain about not getting enough water or not liking to drink water. Well, consuming iceberg lettuce is a great way to increase your intake of water!
So there you have it, reasons to continue buying iceberg lettuce.
No, you can’t survive on it alone and yes, you should incorporate other lettuces and green leafy vegetables into your diet – at the very least, consider a GOOD nutritional supplement if you’re not going to “do” other greens alongside the iceberg.
But consider adding delicious iceberg lettuce to the mix of your other veggie choices!