Food

Iceberg lettuce – intolerance and allergy

Iceberg lettuce

Just like lettuce , iceberg lettuce belongs to the garden lettuce family, which is botanically referred to as Lactuca sativa. A synonym for the iceberg lettuce is iceberg lettuce . Its shape corresponds, namingly, to that of lettuce, with both having different properties and nutritional values.

Here’s what you should know about iceberg lettuce

Iceberg lettuce has the same rounded head shape as lettuce. The compressed shoot axis ensures a close arrangement of the leaves, which overlap. Its shape is reminiscent of a rose with overlapping petals.

Mainly the inner leaves are eaten. The outer ones are deep green and are removed before processing or before sale. It is an annual to biennial plant with a taproot. The iceberg lettuce has the rosette of leaves in common with other garden lettuce – as does the branched inflorescence with yellow flowers. The outer leaves of iceberg lettuce are curled outwards. The inner ones are enclosed and protected by the outer ones. Because of this, they lie close together and retain their bright green color. This is due to the low level of sunlight, which ensures a low level of chlorophyll. The inner leaves are crisp and firm. Depending on the strength of the growth, the head of lettuce can burst open.

In Germany, iceberg lettuce is well on the way to displacing lettuce, which has been number one for centuries, from the popularity list. Iceberg lettuce comes from the USA and has become particularly popular because of its fresh, crunchy leaves. Iceberg lettuce owes its name to the time it was kept fresh during transport by ice. With this method, a long shelf life of the lettuce was also guaranteed from coast to coast.

Unlike many other garden salads, iceberg lettuce has a long shelf life. Lettuce in particular is very sensitive and reacts negatively to both heat and cold. On average, a head is up to 20 centimeters long and can weigh up to one kilogram. It is reminiscent of different types of cabbage. Iceberg lettuce is usually green, but there are different varieties. There are also red variants. In Holland there is also a cultivated variant called crisp lettuce. Iceberg lettuce has been grown and sold in Germany since the beginning of the 20th century.

Its flavor is similar to that of traditional lettuce, with the individual leaves being heartier and firmer. Iceberg lettuce is now also grown in France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Italy and Israel. Due to greenhouse cultivation, it is not seasonal. It can be found in supermarkets all year round, although it is also grown outdoors in the summer. Especially during this time it is very popular due to its robustness against heat.

importance to health

Nutrition experts often complain about the rather low nutrient content in iceberg lettuce. Although it is not a noteworthy supplier of nutrients and vitamins, it is particularly suitable for people who are thinking about a diet. With its low amount of fat, it can easily replace other side dishes and snacks. Due to its firmness, it is also suitable for nibbling.

Although iceberg lettuce does not have as many vitamins as other types of lettuce, it is very low in fat and calories. In addition, its vitamin C content of 15 milligrams per 100 grams is higher than that of conventional lettuce.

Ingredients & nutritional values

With the same amount of lettuce, the calorie content is just 13, and the fat content is 0.3 grams. In addition, iceberg lettuce contains 1.9 grams of carbohydrates for 100 grams of lettuce and about 0.5 grams of fiber.

The main component of iceberg lettuce is 95% water. In addition, iceberg lettuce provides small amounts of vitamins A , B1 and B2 as well as magnesium , potassium , calcium , phosphorus and iron .

Intolerances & allergies

In principle, people can develop intolerances or allergies to almost any food . There are also people who generally have difficulties with salads and vegetables because they stimulate digestion .

This can cause problems in the digestive tract . All in all, intolerance to iceberg lettuce is rather rare, since the ingredients hardly cause allergies. The high water content contributes to this.

Shopping & kitchen tips

Iceberg lettuce is now very popular. This is not only related to its fresh taste and robustness, but also to its extremely easy storage. Little can go wrong when buying.

Unless the stalk has turned brown or the leaves have softened, iceberg lettuce is usually fine. If the leaves look fresh and have their usual light green colour, the quality is good. Storing iceberg lettuce is just as easy. To store it in the fridge, it makes sense to wrap it in foil. Iceberg lettuce can be kept in the vegetable compartment of the refrigerator for at least a week without hesitation. The literature also contains longer periods of time, depending on the temperature of the refrigerator and the quality of the lettuce.

The preparation of the iceberg lettuce is also unproblematic. If the outer leaves no longer appear fresh and have brown spots, they should be removed first. Then the end of the stalk is cut off and the leaves are gradually separated from the middle. Depending on the recipe, the lettuce can also be halved or quartered as a head. It is important to wash the leaves. They are then dried in a salad spinner or on a cloth. A regular, large kitchen knife can be used to cut iceberg lettuce into strips.

preparation tips

There are several ways to prepare iceberg lettuce. In some countries, for example, it is also used as a vegetable. As such, it can be boiled or simmered. Iceberg lettuce is particularly suitable for mixed or simple green salads. It is often offered with tomatoes , cucumbers , feta cheese or olives .

Even when left to stand for a long time, iceberg lettuce has the advantage of staying crisp. This also applies if it is served with salad dressing. For this reason, it is particularly suitable for buffets at large parties or family celebrations. Iceberg lettuce can be combined with almost any raw vegetable. He is similarly variable when it comes to dressing. A light herbal yoghurt dressing or optionally a vinegar and oil dressing is particularly recommended. In the US, the trend has developed to use iceberg lettuce as a topping for sandwiches.

In Germany, too, it can be found on sandwiches in bakeries. It is also suitable as a filling for tacos or wraps. Iceberg lettuce can be used for everything that lettuce is used for.

Lisa Newlon
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Hello! I am Lisa Newlon, and I am a medical writer and researcher with over 10 years of experience in the healthcare industry. I have a Master’s degree in Medicine, and my deep understanding of medical terminology, practices, and procedures has made me a trusted source of information in the medical world.