Of all the super-healthy greens, ‘Kale’ is the king! This leafy green vegetable has gained immense recognition lately owing to it’s exceptional nutrient richness, health benefits, and delicious flavor.
It’s worth noting that a cup of chopped raw kale has more calcium than a glass of milk, more vitamin C than an orange, and more than 100% of a person’s daily vitamin A requirement.
Thus, including this nutritional powerhouse in your diet provides key nutrients that support healthy skin, hair and bones, as well as healthy digestion and a reduced risk of heart disease, cancer, and asthma.
This post provides a nutritional breakdown of kale and an in-depth look at it’s possible health benefits, nutritious recipes to incorporate more kale into your diet, and any potential health risks associated with it’s consumption.
Health And Nutrition Facts Of Kale
Kale is a good source of dietary fiber which improves the digestive action. Along with its low calorie count and zero fat, it is a must-have on any weight loss diet. It has a high iron content and is an incredible source of well-absorbed calcium, helps prevent bone loss, stalls the onset of osteoporosis, and maintains healthy metabolism. The anti inflammatory properties of omega-3 fatty acids help fight and alleviate arthritis, autoimmune disorders and asthma.
Kale’s great detoxifiers – fiber and sulfur lower cholesterol and keep your liver healthy. It’s impressive concentration of nutrients strengthens the immune system and fights viruses and bacteria. It contains phytonutrients, lutein and beta-carotene that improves your vision and skin’s elasticity, firmness and keep it supple. Kale is packed with Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, that increase blood circulation to the scalp, strengthen hair follicles, prevent hair breakage, and improve elasticity of hair.
Both Kale and Spinach are nutritionally similar and are both healthy foods. Kale crushes spinach when it comes to the amount of Vitamin A, C, B6, and K, manganese, copper, and calcium. Choosing between Spinach and Kale depends on your nutrient needs. If you want to prevent yourself from flu then the high levels of Vitamin C from Kale might be the one to reach for, but if you are suffering from high blood pressure then Spinach is best for you.
According to the Linus Pauling Institute, cruciferous vegetables like kale contain glucosinulates which yield goitrin, which has been linked to hypothyroidism. Also, Kale and other leafy greens contain oxalates, which have been linked to kidney stones. Hence we should keep in mind that even if a diet appears to be very good, it is only good for us when consumed in moderation.
Healthy Kale Recipes
Farro is an excellent source of protein, fiber, and iron. It also has a unique chewy texture that makes it great in any salad, soup, or pilaf. This pilaf has kale, sweet potato, pepper, and almond. Each ingredient of this recipe has it’s own unique flavor and texture. For seasoning, use jalapeno pepper, Aleppo pepper, sumac, coriander, and a little sea salt.
This summer salad has all the healthy ingredients including Kale, Broccoli, Beetroot, and Raw Pumpkin Seeds. All ingredients are tossed in a healthy combination of flaxseed and olive oil. Enjoy this Kale Broccoli Salad at any meal or summer party!
Can’t decide between an energizing protein shake and a detoxifying green juice? Why not have both! This protein-packed green juice recipe has all your nutrition needs covered. Thanks to fresh orange and spirulina, every sip is loaded with iron, beta-carotene, vitamin C and fiber.
Green smoothies offer pure nutrition. The amount of vitamins you will get depends on the fruits and vegetables you choose for the smoothie. This smoothie offers an amazing healthy and delicious combination of Kale, Mango, Coconut Water, and Spinach.
What are you going to do with the mango that has been sitting in your fruit bowl staring at you? Well, how about adding a banana, a splash of unsweetened almond milk, a dollop of reduced-fat Greek yogurt, the green freshness of kale and Swiss chard, toss in a few ice cubes and yes this is an early morning mouth party.