Kale Health Benefits, Nutrition and Vegetable Facts

Health Benefits of Eating Kale

  • Kale contains a good amount of glucosinolate isothiocyanate (ITC) which helps combat Helicobacter pylori bacteria that can lead to gastric cancer.
  • This cruciferous vegetable is loaded with antioxidants like flavonoids and carotenoids, which free our body from oxidative stress that caused by free radicals. Quercetin and kaempferol are the two important flavonoids that inhibit the growth of cancer cells.
  • Kale is anti-inflammatory as it provides omega-3 fatty acids which are useful to treat asthma, autoimmune disorder and arthritis.
  • Substantial amount of dietary fiber found in this green vegetable helps reduce cholesterol level, promotes better digestion, stop constipation and reduce the sugar level in the body.
  • The ITC from glucosinolates together with sulfur in kale assist the body to detox, thus maintaining the health and wellness of the body.
  • A cup of kale provides more than RDA of vitamin A (retinol). Besides being an antioxidant, vitamin A also helps promote the wellbeing of the body's immune system and the vision.
  • Another potent antioxidant vitamin found in this cruciferous vegetable is the vitamin C (ascorbic acid). Vitamin C helps recharge beta-carotene and vitamin E when they are oxidized by the harmful free radicals.
  • This nutritious vegetable is rich in vitamin K that is essential for the synthesis of a compound that helps fortify our bones, known as osteocalcin. Vitamin K is also helps prevent atherosclerosis, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases.
  • For those on weight loss diet, kale is an ideal food to be included as it contains low calories and without any fats. Juicing kale is another way of getting its nutrients without having to eat a lot of the vegetable.

Overview and Facts about Kale

Kale Health BenefitsKale (scientific name Brassica oleracea L.), like bok choy, kailon and daikon, is a plant that belongs to the Brassicaceae family. This cruciferous vegetable is a typical cabbage with loosely furled leaves, instead of growing a head. Kale leaves have a special ruffly look that distinguishes it from its cousin, collard greens. The vegetable is generally slightly bitter in taste, even though this bitterness may be tempered through rinsing, cooking, or using much younger leaves. And it is nutritionally rich, compared to other green vegetables.

Usually, kale is consumed cooked, while fairly young leaves can be cut from the vegetable stalks and used raw to make a variety of salads. When cooked, kale is added to make soups in Portugal, roasted together with pizza in Italy, mixed in mashed potatoes in Ireland, and eaten plain around the world. When preparing kale for cooking, remember that the stems are harder to cook compared to the leaves. In general, cooks cut out the biggest stems to be discarded or cooked longer, to get rid of woody stems and soggy leaves.

Kale Nutrition Facts and Calories

Nutrition Value of 1 cup (67 g) Raw Kale (Chopped)
Calories 33 kcal
Total Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 0 mg
Sodium 29 mg
Total Carbohydrates 7 g
Dietary Fiber 1 g
Sugars 0 g
Protein 2 g

Kale Recipe

Kale Salad Recipe

  • 1 medium bunch of raw kale, cut into 0.5-cm strips
  • 1/2 small red onion, cut into 0.5-cm slices
  • 30 g Gruyere cheese, finely grated
  • 1/2 cup toasted hazelnuts, roughly chopped
  • 3/4 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Combine the kale, onion, cheese and hazelnuts in a big bowl, toss well. Drizzle the olive oil over, then season with salt and pepper to taste. Mix well.

Kale Side Effects

Kale is usually harmless for most of us in food amounts or in medicinal amounts in short-term. There is no evidence of adverse reaction from eating kale.

Related Fruits and Vegetables Articles:

Beets Health Benefits Spinach Health Benefits Swiss Chard Health Benefits
Broccoli Health Benefits Bananas Health Benefits Goji Berries Health Benefits

Health Benefits of Vegetables

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