11 Arugula Benefits for Your Health (with Nutrition & Recipes)

Arugula benefits are derived from its high concentrations of vitamin A, vitamin C, and phenolic compounds such as lutein and zeaxanthin. These contain antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, which help to improve eye health, control blood sugar levels and prevent the development of cardiovascular diseases.

Arugula also contains minerals such as potassium and calcium, which are necessary for regulating blood pressure. This super green also has phosphorus, magnesium and vitamin K, which are essential for maintaining healthy bones.

Arugula is a vegetable with a slightly bitter and spicy taste and can be eaten raw or cooked, and added to salads, sauces, stews, or soups.

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Health benefits

The main benefits of arugula are:

1. Promoting weight loss

Arugula is low in calories and about 100 g of raw or cooked leaves contains about 29 calories. That means they can help with weight loss diets. Their high fiber content also keeps you full, which reduces hunger and promotes weight loss. 

2. Regulating blood sugar levels

The extract and oil from from arugula seeds can increase insulin sensitivity and reduce blood sugar levels. They contain alpha-lipoic acid, a powerful antioxidant that reduces oxidative stress that is related to metabolic disorders. 

Thus, arugula can be incorporated into your daily diet to help prevent and treat diabetes. In addition, arugula is rich in fiber that regulates the absorption of carbohydrates in the intestine, which can help to lower blood glucose levels and improve insulin resistance.

3. Controlling high blood pressure

Arugula contains large amounts of nitrates and potassium, which are substances that promote vasodilation. This facilitate optimal blood circulation, which can help to lower blood pressure. This is especially beneficial for those with a history of hypertension.

In addition, the magnesium and calcium present in arugula also inhibit the release of norepinephrine, a neurotransmitter responsible for increasing blood pressure. For this reason, arugula can also reduce blood pressure.

4. Preventing cardiovascular disease

The vitamin C, lutein and zeaxanthin found in arugula have antioxidant action that help to reduce the blood vessel damage caused by oxidative stress. Over time, this damage which can cause thickening of the artery walls, which increases the risk for cardiovascular diseases such as atherosclerosis, heart attack or stroke.

The vitamin K present in arugula also prevents calcification of the arteries, while its fiber helps to reduce bad cholesterol and triglycerides. This can reduce the formation of fatty plaques in the arteries to help prevent cardiac diseases.

5. Improving eye health

Arugula is rich in antioxidants such as lutein and zeaxanthin, which act by fighting free radicals that can damage eye cells. Therefore, regular consumption may help to improve vision and eye health.

In addition, arugula has large amounts of carotene and vitamin A, which are important for helping to keep eye cell membranes healthy. This can prevent vision problems such as dry eyes, night blindness or age-related macular degeneration.

6. Maintaining bone health

Arugula is rich in calcium, phosphorus and magnesium, which are minerals that are fundamental for strengthening the bones, and increasing density. This helps to keep bones healthy, which can help prevent diseases such as osteoporosis, osteopenia or rickets, for example, and also reduce the risk of fractures.

In addition, the vitamin K present in arugula slows down bone metabolism and promote calcium absorption from the diet, which helps to keep bones strong and healthy.

7. Preventing early aging

Arugula is rich in carotene and vitamins A and C which are powerful antioxidants that help to fight free radicals that cause skin aging.

In addition, the vitamin C present in arugula helps to stimulate the skin's production of collagen, reducing sagging and the appearance of wrinkles and expression lines. Vitamin A protects the skin from damage caused by the sun's ultraviolet rays.

8. Improving muscle performance

Arugula is an excellent source of vitamins, fiber, nitrates and antioxidants, all which contribute to blood pressure regulation. These nutrients also promote the flow of oxygen to the muscles, which is beneficial for the optimal performance of athletes. In addition, the vitamin K in arugula also helps prevent bone injuries and is recommended for athletes.

9. Detoxifying the body

The chlorophyll and vitamin C present in arugula help the body to eliminate toxins and neutralize heavy metals, chemicals and pesticides. It can detoxify the body and prevent DNA damage that can cause cancer, premature aging and cardiovascular disease.

10. Helping to fight cancer

Some in-vitro lab studies using cancer cells have shown that arugula may be beneficial for combating breast, prostate, lung and pancreatic cancer. It is rich in glucosinolates such as sulforaphane and erucin, which are sulphur-containing substances that are essential for inhibiting the enzymes involved in the multiplication of cancer cells. However, studies in humans are still needed to prove these benefits.

11. Preventing fetal malformations

Arugula is rich in folate, a type of B-complex vitamin that is essential for the production of DNA and other genetic material. This is especially important for women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, as folate deficiency can cause fetal malformations like spina bifida.

Nutritional information

The following table outlines the nutritional information for 100 grams of raw rocket:


Quantity per 100 g


29 calories


2.6 g


0.7 g


2.2 g


1.6 g

Vitamin A

308 mcg

Vitamin B6

0.07 mg

Vitamin C

15 mg

Vitamin K

108.6 mcg


1848 mcg


97 mcg


27 mg


370 mg


160 mg


52 mg


41 mg


1.5 mg


0.4 mg

Lutein e zeaxanthin

3555 mcg

It's important to note that in order to obtain all the benefits mentioned above, arugula should be incorporated into a healthy and balanced diet.

How to eat

Arugula can be added to salads, juices or sandwiches. Because it has a slightly bitter taste, some people may not like its flavor when it is not cooked. You can improve its taste by cooking it with garlic.

Healthy recipes

Some quick, easy-to-prepare and nutritious arugula recipes are:

1. Arugula salad with mango


  • 1 handful of washed arugula
  • 1 mango cut into cubes
  • Cherry tomatoes, as desired
  • Ricotta cheese or buffalo mozzarella to taste, cut into cubes
  • Balsamic vinegar, for seasoning
  • Olive oil, for seasoning
  • Salt, to taste


Place the arugula, mango, cherry tomatoes and cheese in a bowl and mix. Add salt, balsamic vinegar and olive oil to season as desired. Then serve.

2. Braised arugula


  • 1 handful of washed arugula
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 2 tablespoons of dried tomatoes
  • 1 drizzle of olive oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Black pepper to taste


Heat the  olive oil in a pan. Add the garlic, saute until brown, then add the arugula and dried tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper, if desired. Serve afterwards.

3. Arugula salad with salmon


  • 200g fresh asparagus tips
  • 1 large ripe avocado
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • 1 handful of washed fresh arugula
  • 225 g slices of smoked salmon
  • Salt to taste
  • Olive oil to season
  • Vinegar to season
  • Aromatic herbs, as desired


Bring the water to a boil with the salt. Add the asparagus and cook for 4 minutes, then drain. Place the asparagus in cold water, drain again and set aside. Cut the avocado in half, remove the pit and skin, then cut the pulp into smaller pieces.  Brush with lemon juice.

Mix the asparagus, avocado, arugula and smoked salmon in a bowl. Season with the herbs and add olive oil and vinegar, as desired.