Purslane: A Weed with a Wealth of Nutrients

Purslane, often considered a common weed, is actually a highly nutritious leafy vegetable that is used in many parts of the world for its health benefits and culinary uses. With a slightly sour and salty taste, purslane offers a unique flavor along with a rich nutrient profile. Let’s delve into the characteristics, health benefits, and nutritional information of this underrated plant.


  • Type: Leafy Green, Portulacaceae Family
  • Origin: Middle East, now widespread
  • Color: Green leaves, yellow flowers
  • Flavor: Slightly sour and salty
  • Texture: Succulent, juicy leaves
  • Season: Late spring to late summer
  • Uses: Salads, soups, stir-fries, and even as a garnish

Health Benefits

1. Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Purslane is one of the few plants that contain a high amount of Omega-3 fatty acids, beneficial for heart health.

2. Rich in Antioxidants

Packed with antioxidants like beta-carotene and vitamin C, purslane helps in fighting free radicals.

3. Improves Digestion

High in dietary fiber, purslane aids in digestion and helps to prevent constipation.

4. Anti-inflammatory Properties

Due to the presence of Omega-3 fatty acids and other compounds, it possesses anti-inflammatory benefits.

5. Supports Bone Health

With minerals like calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus, purslane contributes to stronger bones.

6. Boosts Immune System

High in Vitamin C, it is excellent for boosting the immune system.

Nutritional Table (Per 100g Serving)

Nutrient Amount % Daily Value
Calories 20 1%
Protein 2.3g 4.6%
Total Fat 0.4g 0.6%
Carbohydrates 3.4g 1.1%
Fiber 2.5g 10%
Sugars 0.8g 1.6%
Calcium 65mg 6.5%
Iron 1.9mg 10.5%
Magnesium 68mg 17%
Phosphorus 44mg 4.4%
Potassium 494mg 14%
Sodium 45mg 1.9%
Zinc 0.2mg 1.4%
Vitamin C 21mg 35%
Vitamin A 1320 IU 26.4%
Vitamin E 12.2 mg 61%

Note: Nutritional values are approximate and can vary based on growing conditions and processing methods.

Purslane is a surprising nutrient-dense plant that offers an array of health benefits, from Omega-3 fatty acids to a wealth of vitamins and minerals. Incorporating this “weed” into your diet could very well be a step towards a healthier lifestyle.

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