New research has shown that one vegetable in particular could be healthier than others. According to a study published in the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention journal, 'Preventing Chronic Disease', watercress could be one of the healthiest vegetables around.

A team from William Paterson University in New Jersey ranked the plant as one of 41 “powerhouse” foods. Scores were based on how nutrient-dense each food was, as well as their potential to protect against chronic diseases such as cancer and heart disease.

Registered dietician for MyFitnessPal, Stephanie Nelson, explained: “Watercress is high in vitamin K, vitamin C and vitamin A. It is also part of the cruciferous vegetable family, alongside broccoli, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts. Cruciferous vegetables have powerful antioxidants in them that help prevent cell damage that might cause cancer and other diseases.”

Her colleague, dietician Joanna Gregg added: “Watch out kale, there is a new super green on the scene. With strong antioxidant properties, watercress’s health benefits range from decreasing oxidant stress to reducing tissue damage related to the development of some cancers. This aromatic vegetable can be added to any salad, sandwich or smoothie for a powerful health promoting punch.”