Kale is one of the healthiest vegetables around and you can ensure maximum nutrition and flavor by cooking it properly, or not cooking it at all; kale makes a crunchy, enticing addition to all manner of raw dishes. Kale is super nutritious with powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. The Isothiocyanates made from glucosinolates in kale play a primary role in kale’s ability to lower the risk of many cancers, as well as indole-3-carbinol, which boosts DNA repair in cells and may block the growth of cancer cells. Kale is also a good source of carotenoids and flavonoids, beta carotene, vitamin K, vitamin C, lutein, zeaxanthin, and a fairly rich in calcium too. Kale is far more nutritious than other leafy greens, and here are some reasons why you try to eat them more often:
1. Anti-inflammatory: Inflammation is the number one cause of arthritis, heart disease and a number of autoimmune diseases, and is triggered by the consumption of animal products. Kale is an incredibly effective anti-inflammatory food, potentially preventing and even reversing these illnesses.
2. Iron: Despite the myth that vegetarians are anemic, the number of non-vegetarians with iron-deficiencies is on the rise. Per calorie, kale has more iron than beef.
3. Calcium: Dairy and beef both contain calcium, but the U.S. still has some of the highest rates of bone loss and osteoporosis in the world. Kale contains more calcium per calorie than milk (90 grams per serving) and is also better absorbed by the body than dairy.
4. Fiber: Like protein, fiber is a macronutrient, which means we need it every day. But many Americans don’t eat nearly enough and the deficiency is linked to heart disease, digestive disorders and cancer. Protein-rich foods, like meat, contain little to no fiber. One serving of kale not only contains 5 percent of the recommended daily intake of fiber, but it also provides 2 grams of protein.
5. Omega fatty acids: Essential Omega fats play an important role in our health, unlike the saturated fats in meat. A serving of kale contains 121 mg of omega-3 fatty acids and 92.4 mg of omega-6 fatty acids.
6. Immunity: Superbugs and bacteria are a serious risk to our health. Many of these come as a result of factory farm meat, eggs and dairy products. Kale is an incredibly rich source of immune-boosting carotenoid and flavanoid antioxidants including vitamins A and C.
- Kale (from Organic Authority)
- 7 Reasons Kale Is the New Beef (from Organic Authority)
(Photo Credit: HomeGrown Organics: Gainesville)