Benefits of kale
. Kale is a leafy green cruciferous vegetable that is chock full of essential vitamins A, C and K as well as minerals like copper, potassium, iron, manganese and phosphorus. A cup of fresh kale has only about 40 calories but packs almost 3 grams of protein.
. The beautiful leaves of the kale plant provide an earthy flavor and more nutritional value for fewer calories than almost any other food around. Although it can be found in markets throughout the year, it is in season from the middle of winter through the beginning of spring when it has a sweeter taste and is more widely available. Kale is a leafy green vegetable that belongs to the Brassica family, a group of vegetables including cabbage, collards, and Brussels sprouts that have gained recent widespread attention due to their health promoting, sulfur containing phytonutrients. It is easy to grow and can grow in colder temperatures where a light frost will produce especially sweet kale leaves. There are several varieties of kale; these include curly kale, ornamental kale, and dinosaur (or Lacinato or Tuscan) kale, all of which differ in taste, texture, and appearance. The scientific name for kale is Brassica oleracea.
. kale is a descendent of the wild cabbage, a plant thought to have originated in Asia Minor and to have been brought to Europe around 600 B.C. by groups of Celtic wanderers. Curly kale played an important role in early European foodways, having been a significant crop during ancient Roman times and a popular vegetable eaten by peasants in the Middle Ages. English settlers brought kale to the United States in the 17th century. Both ornamental and dinosaur kale are much more recent varieties. Dinosaur kale was discovered in Italy in the late 19th century. Ornamental kale, originally a decorative garden plant, was first cultivated commercially as in the 1980s in California. Ornamental kale is now better known by the name salad savoy.
Types of Kale
. Kale can be curly, flat, or even have a bluish tint mixed in with the green. The flavors differ, so try them all. Many farmers markets sell several types of kale, and most major grocery stores should have at least one. If you have a garden, or even just a few containers on a patio, you can grow kale. Whether you buy kale from the store or pluck it from your own backyard, look for dark, crisp leaves. When you get ready to cook or eat it, remove the leaves from the tougher stalks.
Kale is a great detox food
. Kale is filled with fiber and sulfur, both great for detoxifying your body and keeping your liver healthy. Kale is a super food with staying power.
Kale is high in calcium
. Per calorie, kale has more calcium than milk, which aids in preventing bone loss, preventing osteoporosis and maintaining a healthy metabolism. Vitamin C is also helpful to maintain cartilage and joint flexibility. . Its abundant vitamin K content is important for bone health, forestalling the effects of osteoporosis. And the folic acid and B6 provide cardiovascular support and prevent heart disease.
Kale is high in Vitamin K
. Eating a diet high in Vitamin K can help protect against various cancers. It is also necessary for a wide variety of bodily functions including normal bone health and blood clotting. Also increased levels of vitamin K can help people suffering from Alzheimers disease
Kale is high in iron
. Per calorie, kale has more iron than beef. Iron is essential for good health, such as the formation of hemoglobin and enzymes, transporting oxygen to various parts of the body, cell growth, proper liver function and more. Kale is loaded with all sorts of beneficial compounds
Kale is low in calorie high in fiber and has zero fat
. One cup of kale has only 36 calories, 5 grams of fiber and 0 grams of fat. It is great for aiding in digestion and elimination with its great fiber content. Its also filled with so many nutrients, vitamins, folate and magnesium as well as those listed below.
Kale is filled with powerful antioxidants
. Antioxidants, such as carotenoids and flavonoids help protect against various cancers. cannot stop eating kale lately. I cant help myself. Ive been using this hearty, healthy green in almost every meal! But thats not a bad thing at all. Kale is a nutritional powerhouse and is beneficial to your health in many ways. One cup of kale has zero fat and only 36 calories and is high in vitamins and antioxidants. You can eat this green raw or cooked. Enjoy in salads, soups, stews, stir fries, and smoothies.
Kale is a great anti inflammatory food
. One cup of kale is filled with 10% of the RDA of omega 3 fatty acids, which help, fight against arthritis, asthma and autoimmune disorders. It is related to cruciferous vegetables like cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, collard greens and brussels sprouts. There are many different types of kale. The leaves can be green or purple in color, and have either a smooth or curly shape.
Kale is great for cardiovascular support
. Eating more kale can help lower cholesterol levels. Kale contains an antioxidant known as alpha lipoic acid, which has been shown to lower glucose levels, increase insulin sensitivity and prevent oxidative stress induced changes in patients with diabetes. Studies on alpha lipoic acid have also shown decreases in peripheral neuropathy and/or autonomic neuropathy in diabetics.
Kale is high in Vitamin A
. Vitamin A is great for your vision, your skin as well as helping to prevent lung and oral cavity cancers. The most common type of kale is called curly kale or Scots kale, which has green and curly leaves and a hard, fibrous stem. Kale is much higher in vitamin C than most other vegetables, containing about 4.5 times much as spinach .
Kale is high in Vitamin C
. This is very helpful for your immune system, your metabolism and your hydration. Kale is one of the worlds best sources of vitamin K, with a single raw cup containing almost 7 times the recommended daily amount. Kale is actually loaded with compounds that are believed to have protective effects against cancer. This includes sulforaphane, a substance that has been shown to help fight the formation of cancer at the molecular level.
. A splash of olive oil and a little onion or garlic are all this veggie needs, and it cooks up in minutes. The leaf is tougher than spinach leaves, so it wont wilt as quickly in the pan. The form of vitamin K in kale is K1, which is different than vitamin K2. K2 is found in fermented soy foods and certain animal products. It helps prevent heart disease and osteoporosis.
Make a kale Caesar salad
. You can eat kale raw in a salad. The leaves can stand up to heavy dressings. Kale Caesar salads have popped up on many restaurant menus. You can whip up a homemade mustard based dressing that has all the thickness of Caesar but fewer calories.
Bake kale chips
. Bake kale in the oven with just a little olive oil drizzled over lightly salted leaves. Store bought kale chips can sometimes be deep fried or come with a coating of cheese, so check labels to make sure youre not reaching for a high calorie snack.
Kale is a leafy green cruciferous vegetable
. Kale is a leafy green cruciferous vegetable that is chock full of essential vitamins A, C and K as well as minerals like copper, potassium, iron, manganese and phosphorus. A cup of fresh kale has only about 40 calories but packs almost 3 grams of protein. One cup of cooked kale has over 1000% more vitamin C than a cup of cooked spinach and unlike spinach, kales oxalate content is very low which means that the calcium and iron in kale are highly absorbable in the human digestive system.
. Studies have shown that type 1 diabetics who consume high fiber diets have lower blood glucose levels and type 2 diabetics may have improved blood sugar, lipids and insulin levels. One cup of chopped fresh kale provides about 2.6 grams of fiber.
Kale contains an antioxidant
. Kale contains an antioxidant known as alpha lipoic acid, which has been shown to lower glucose levels, increase insulin sensitivity and prevent oxidative stress induced changes in patients with diabetes. Studies on alpha lipoic acid have also shown decreases in peripheral neuropathy and/or autonomic neuropathy in diabetics. Of note, most studies have used intravenous alpha lipoic acid and it is unsure whether oral supplementation would elicit the same benefits.
. The fiber, potassium, vitamin C and B6 content in kale all support heart health. An increase in potassium intake along with a decrease in sodium intake is the most important dietary change that a person can make to reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease, according to Mark Houston, M.D., M.S., an associate clinical professor of medicine at Vanderbilt Medical School and director of the Hypertension Institute at St. Thomas Hospital in Tennessee.
. Kale and other green vegetables that contain chlorophyll have been shown to be effective at blocking the carcinogenic effects of heterocyclic amines, which are generated when grilling foods at a high temperature.4 If you tend to like your grilled foods charred, make sure to pair them with green vegetables to help negate these effects.
. Low intakes of vitamin K have been associated with a higher risk for bone fracture. Adequate vitamin K consumption is important for good health, as it acts as a modifier of bone matrix proteins, improves calcium absorption and may reduce urinary excretion of calcium.
. Kale is high in fiber and water content, both of which help to prevent constipation and promote regularity and a healthy digestive tract. The form of vitamin K in kale is K1, which is different than vitamin K2. K2 is found in fermented soy foods and certain animal products. It helps prevent heart disease and osteoporosis.
Healthy skin and hair
. Kale is high in vitamin A, a nutrient required for sebum production to keep hair moisturized. Vitamin A is also necessary for the growth of all bodily tissues, including skin and hair. Adequate intake of vitamin C, which kale can provide, is needed for the building and maintenance of collagen, which provides structure to skin and hair. Iron deficiency is a common cause of hair loss, which can be prevented by an adequate intake of iron rich foods, like kale.
How to incorporate more kale into your diet
. Kale can be enjoyed raw in salads or on sandwiches or wraps, braised, boiled, saut
Risks and precautions
. Beta blockers, a type of medication most commonly prescribed for heart disease, can cause potassium levels to increase in the blood. High potassium foods such as bananas should be consumed in moderation when taking beta blockers. Consuming too much potassium can be harmful for those whose kidneys are not fully functional. If your kidneys are unable to remove excess potassium from the blood, it could be fatal.
Detoxification and Weight loss
. The fiber (5 grams in one cup) and sulfur in kale aid with digestion and liver health. The Vitamin C it contains hydrates your body and increases your metabolism, leading to weight loss and healthy blood sugar levels. The fiber in kale also lowers cholesterol.
Strengthen Your Immune System
. Kales impressive concentration of nutrients strengthens the immune system and fights viruses and bacteria. Kale has more iron than beef, making it a great source of this valuable mineral for vegans and vegetarians. It helps more oxygen get to your blood and greatly helps those who are anemic.
Healthier Hair Skin andNails
. The healthy balance of omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids keep your body strong, healthy and beautiful from the inside out. Kales concentration of major nutrients gives your skins health and appearance a boost. Kale provides us with this cholesterol lowering benefit whether it is raw or cooked. However, a recent study has shown that the cholesterol lowering ability of raw kale improves significantly when it is steamed. In fact, when the cholesterol lowering ability of steamed kale was compared with the cholesterol lowering ability of the prescription drug cholestyramine (a medication that is taken for the purpose of lowering cholesterol), kale bound 42% as many bile acids (based on a standard of comparison involving total dietary fiber). Amongst all of the cruciferous vegetables, only collard greens scored higher at 46%.
Clearly and Stand Strong
. Kales Vitamin A content helps keep the eyes from optical disorders that come with age. It also helps store vitamins in the retina. The calcium and vitamin K and D keep your bones strong. Kales risk lowering benefits for cancer have recently been extended to at least five different types of cancer. These types include cancer of the bladder, breast, colon, ovary, and prostate. Isothiocyanates (ITCs) made from glucosinolates in kale play a primary role in achieving these risk lowering benefits.
. The omega 3 fatty acids in kale help fight and alleviate arthritis, autoimmune disorders and asthma. The vitamin C content helps relieve stiff joints. Kale can provide you with some special cholesterol lowering benefits if you will cook it by steaming. The fiber related components in kale do a better job of binding together with bile acids in your digestive tract when theyve been steamed.
. Kale, like other dark green veggies, may be helpful in preventing various cancers such as colon, prostate and ovarian. Its abundant vitamin K content is important for bone health, forestalling the effects of osteoporosis. And the folic acid and B6 provide cardiovascular support and prevent heart disease.
Kale is Among The Most Nutrient Dense Foods on The Planet
. Before we get to all the benefits, let me briefly explain what kale is
Kale is Loaded With Powerful Antioxidants Like Quercetin and Kaempferol
. Kale, like other leafy greens, is very high in antioxidants. This includes beta carotene, vitamin C, as well as various flavonoids and polyphenols. Antioxidants are substances that help counteract oxidative damage by free radicals in the body.Oxidative damage is believed to be among the leading drivers of ageing and many diseases, including cancer. But many substances that happen to be antioxidants also have other important functions.
It is an Excellent Source of Vitamin C
. It is a water soluble antioxidant that serves many vital functions in the bodys cells. For example, it is necessary to synthesize collagen, the most abundant structural protein in the body. Kale is much higher in vitamin C than most other vegetables, containing about 4.5 times much as spinach.The truth is
. Kale is extremely high in vitamin C, an antioxidant that has many important roles in the body. A single cup of raw kale actually contains more vitamin C than an orange. Researchers can now identify over 45 different flavonoids in kale. With kaempferol and quercetin heading the list, kales flavonoids combine both antioxidant and anti inflammatory benefits in way that gives kale a leading dietary role with respect to avoidance of chronic inflammation and oxidative stress.
Kale Can Help Lower Cholesterol Which May Reduce The Risk of Heart Disease
. Cholesterol has many important functions in the body. One of them, is being used to make bile acids, which are substances that help us digest fats.The liver turns cholesterol into bile acids, which are then released into the digestive system whenever we eat a fatty meal. When all the fat has been absorbed and the bile acids have served their purpose, they are reabsorbed into the bloodstream and used again. Substances called bile acid sequestrants can bind bile acids in the digestive system and prevent them from being reabsorbed. This reduces the total amount of cholesterol in the body.
Kale is One of The Worlds Best Sources of Vitamin K
. Kale is one of the worlds best sources of vitamin K, with a single raw cup containing almost 7 times the recommended daily amount. The form of vitamin K in kale is K1, which is different than vitamin K2. K2 is found in fermented soy foods and certain animal products. It helps prevent heart disease and osteoporosis .
There Are Numerous Cancer Fighting Substances in Kale
. Kale is actually loaded with compounds that are believed to have protective effects against cancer. This includes sulforaphane, a substance that has been shown to help fight the formation of cancer at the molecular level.It also contains a indole 3 carbinol, another substance that is believed to help prevent cancer.
Kale is Very High in Beta Carotene
. Kale is often claimed to be high in vitamin A, but this is false. It is actually high in beta carotene, an antioxidant that the body can turn into vitamin A. For this reason, kale can be an effective way to increase your bodys levels of this very important vitamin.
Kale is a Good Source of Minerals
. Kale is high in minerals, some of which many people are deficient in. It is a good, plant based source of calcium, a nutrient that is very important for bone health and plays a role in all sorts of cellular functions.It is also a decent source of magnesium, an incredibly important mineral that most people dont get enough of. Eating plenty of magnesium may be protective against type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Kale also contains quite a bit of potassium, a mineral that helps maintain electrical gradients in the bodys cells. Adequate potassium intake has been linked to reduced blood pressure and a lower risk of heart disease.
Kale is High in Lutein and Zeaxanthin Powerful Nutrients That Protect the Eyes
. One of the most common consequences of ageing is that eyesight gets worse. Fortunately, there are several nutrients in the diet that can help prevent this from happening. Two of the main ones are lutein and zeaxanthin, carotenoid antioxidants that are found in large amounts in kale and some other foods.
Whats New and Beneficial About Kale
. Kale can provide you with some special cholesterol lowering benefits if you will cook it by steaming. The fiber related components in kale do a better job of binding together with bile acids in your digestive tract when theyve been steamed. When this binding process takes place, its easier for bile acids to be excreted, and the result is a lowering of your cholesterol levels. Raw kale still has cholesterol lowering abilityandjust not as much.
Kales risk lowering benefits
. Kales risk lowering benefits for cancer have recently been extended to at least five different types of cancer. These types include cancer of the bladder, breast, colon, ovary, and prostate. Isothiocyanates (ITCs) made from glucosinolates in kale play a primary role in achieving these risk lowering benefits. Kale is now recognized as providing comprehensive support for the bodys detoxification system. New research has shown that the ITCs made from kales glucosinolates can help regulate detox at a genetic level.
. Youll want to include kale as one of the cruciferous vegetables you eat on a regular basis if you want to receive the fantastic health benefits provided by the cruciferous vegetable family. At a minimum, include cruciferous vegetables as part of your diet 2 3 times per week, and make the serving size at least 1 1/2 cups. Even better from a health standpoint, enjoy kale and other vegetables from the cruciferous vegetable group 4 5 times per week, and increase your serving size to 2 cups. Kale is one of the healthiest vegetables around and one way to be sure to enjoy the maximum nutrition and flavor from kale is to cook it properly. We recommend Healthy Steaming kale for 5 minutes. To ensure quick and even cooking cut the leaves into 1/2 slices and the stems into 1/4 lengths. Let them sit for at least 5 minutes to enhance their health promoting qualities before steaming.
. While not as well researched as some of its fellow cruciferous vegetables like broccoli or cabbage, kale is a food that you can count on for some unsurpassed health benefits, if for no other reason than its exceptional nutrient richness. In our own website food rating system, kale scored 4 excellents, 6 very goods, and 10 goodsandfor a total of 20 standout categories of nutrient richness! That achievement is difficult for most foods to match.
Antioxidant Related Health Benefits
. kale has been studied more extensively in relationship to cancer than any other health condition. This research focus makes perfect sense. Kales nutrient richness stands out in three particular areas: (1) antioxidant nutrients, (2) anti inflammatory nutrients, and (3) anti cancer nutrients in the form of glucosinolates. Without sufficient intake of antioxidants, our oxygen metabolism can become compromised, and we can experience a metabolic problem called oxidative stress. Without sufficient intake of anti inflammatory nutrients, regulation of our inflammatory system can become compromised, and we can experience the problem of chronic inflammation. Oxidative stress and chronic inflammationandand the combination of these metabolic problemsandare risk factors for development of cancer. Weve seen research studies on 5 specific types of cancerandincluding bladder cancer, breast cancer, colon cancer, ovarian cancer, and prostate cancerandand intake of cruciferous vegetables (specifically including kale). As a group, these studies definitely show cancer preventive benefits from kale intake, and in some cases, treatment benefits as well.
Glucosinolates and Cancer Preventive Benefits
. kale is ample evidence that its glucosinolates provide cancer preventive benefits. Kale is a top food source for at least four glucosinolates, and once kale is eaten and digested, these glucosinolates can be converted by the body into cancer preventive compounds. Kales glucosinolates and the ITCs made from them have well documented cancer preventive properties, and in some cases, cancer treatment properties as well. At the top of the cancer related research for kale are colon cancer and breast cancer, but risk of bladder cancer, prostate cancer, and ovarian cancer have all been found to decrease in relationship to routine intake of kale. The chart below presents a summary of the unusual glucosinlate phytonutrients found in kale, and the anti cancer ITCs made from them inside the body
. You can count on kale to provide valuable cardiovascular support in terms of its cholesterol lowering ability. Researchers now understand exactly how this support process works. Our liver uses cholesterol as a basic building block to product bile acids. Bile acids are specialized molecules that aid in the digestion and absorption of fat through a process called emulsification. These molecules are typically stored in fluid form in our gall bladder, and when we eat a fat containing meal, they get released into the intestine where they help ready the fat for interaction with enzymes and eventual absorption up into the body. When we eat kale, fiber related nutrients in this cruciferous vegetable bind together with some of the bile acids in the intestine in such a way that they simply stay inside the intestine and pass out of our body in a bowel movement, rather than getting absorbed along with the fat they have emulsified. When this happens, our liver needs to replace the lost bile acids by drawing upon our existing supply of cholesterol, and, as a result, our cholesterol level drops down.
Other Health Related Benefits
. Kale has a definite role to play in support of the bodys detoxification processes. The isothiocyanates (ITCs) made from kales glucosinolates have been shown to help regulate detox activities in our cells. Most toxins that pose a risk to our body must be detoxified by our cells using a two step process. The two steps in the process are called Phase I detoxification and Phase II detoxification. The ITCs made from kales glucosinolates have been shown to favorably modify both detox steps (Phase I and Phase II). In addition, the unusually large numbers of sulfur compounds in kale have been shown to help support aspects of Phase II detoxification that require the presence of sulfur. By supporting both aspects of our cellular detox process (Phase I and Phase II), nutrients in kale can give our body an edge up in dealing with toxic exposure, whether from our environment or from our food.
How to Select
. Look for kale with firm, deeply colored leaves and moist hardy stems. Kale should be displayed in a cool environment since warm temperatures will cause it to wilt and will negatively affect its flavor. The leaves should look fresh, be unwilted, and be free from signs of browning, yellowing, and small holes. Choose kale with smaller sized leaves since these will be more tender and have a more mild flavor than those with larger leaves. Kale is available throughout the year, although it is more widely available, and at its peak, from the middle of winter through the beginning of spring.
. place kale in a plastic storage bag removing as much of the air from the bag as possible. Store in the refrigerator where it will keep for 5 days. The longer it is stored, the more bitter its flavor becomes. Do not wash kale before storing because exposure to water encourages spoilage.
Tips for Preparing Kale
. Rinse kale leaves under cold running water. Chop leaf portion into 1/2 slices and the stems into 1/4 lengths for quick and even cooking. To get the most health benefits from kale, let sit for a minimum of 5 minutes before cooking. Sprinkling with lemon juice before letting them sit can further enhance its beneficial phytonutrient concentration.
The Healthiest Way of Cooking Kale
. We recommend Healthy Steaming kale for maximum nutrition and flavor. Fill the bottom of a steamer pot with 2 inches of water. While waiting for the water to come to a rapid boil chop greens. Steam for 5 minutes and toss with our Mediterranean Dressingand top with your favorite optional ingredients. For details see 5 Minute Kale.
Kale and Oxalates
. Kale is among a small number of foods that contain measurable amounts of oxalates, naturally occurring substances found in plants, animals, and human beings. When oxalates become too concentrated in body fluids, they can crystallize and cause health problems. For this reason, individuals with already existing and untreated kidney or gallbladder problems may want to avoid eating kale. Laboratory studies have shown that oxalates may also interfere with absorption of calcium from the body.
Kale and Pesticide Residues
. According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG) in their 2014 report, Shoppers Guide to Pesticides in Produce, conventionally grown kale are contaminated with concentrations of organophosphate insecticides, which are considered to be highly toxic to the nervous system. While they were not among the 12 varieties of produce most concentrated in overall pesticide residues (and therefore not part of the EWGs traditional Dirty Dozen), the EWG felt that this organophosphate concentration was relevant enough to bring attention to kale. They actually renamed their produce category of concern from Dirty Dozen to Dirty Dozen Plus with kale, collard greens, and hot peppers being the Plus conventionally grown produce. Therefore, individuals wanting to avoid pesticide associated health risks may want to avoid consumption of kale unless it is grown organically.
Kale as a Goitrogenic Food
. Kale is sometimes referred to as a goitrogenic food. Yet, contrary to popular belief, according to the latest studies, foods themselvesandkale included and are not goitrogenic in the sense of causing goiter whenever they are consumed, or even when they are consumed in excess. In fact, most foods that are commonly called goitrogenic and such as the cruciferous vegetables (including kale, broccoli, and cauliflower) and soyfoods and do not interfere with thyroid function in healthy persons even when they are consumed on a daily basis. Nor is it scientifically correct to say that foods contain goitrogens, at least not if you are thinking about goitrogens as a category of substances like proteins, carbohydrates, or vitamins. With respect to the health of our thyroid gland, all that can be contained in a food are nutrients that provide us with a variety of health benefits but which, under certain circumstances, can also interfere with thyroid function. The term goitrogenic food makes it sound as if something is wrong with the food, but that is simply not the case. What causes problems for certain individuals is not the food itself but the mismatched nature of certain substances within the food to their unique health circumstances.
. Kale is a nutritional standout in three basic areas: (1) antioxidant and anti inflammatory nutrients, (2) much needed micronutrients (in which the average U.S. adult is currently deficient), and (3) cancer preventive nutrients called glucosinolates.
Fiber and Anti Inflammatory Omega 3 Fatty Acids
. Fiber and omega 3s are two macronutrients largely deficient in the U.S. diet and provided by kale in impressive amounts. It only takes 200 calories worth of kale to provide 14 grams of fiber and substantially more than the average U.S. adult gets in an entire day after a diet of 2,000 calories. And while kale is not as concentrated in omega 3s as some of the other cruciferous vegetablesandand certainly not in the same category as walnuts or salmonandit still provides us with a significant amount of alpha linolenic acid (ALA), the basic building block for all omega 3 fats. From less than 100 calories worth of kale, we can get over 350 milligrams.
Kale and its Cancer Preventing Phytonutrients
. Kales special mix of cancer preventing glucosinolates has been the hottest area of research on this cruciferous vegetable. Kale is an especially rich source of glucosinolates, and once kale is eaten and digested, these glucosinolates can be converted by the body into cancer preventive compounds. Some of this conversion process can also take place in the food itself, prior to consumption.
What about kale in juices and smoothies
. In addition to the nutrients highlighted in our ratings chart, an in depth nutritional profile for Kale is also available. This profile includes information on a full array of nutrients, including carbohydrates, sugar, soluble and insoluble fiber, sodium, vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, amino acids and more.
. Kale is abundant in two carotenoids, lutein and zeaxanthin, which act like sunglass filters preventing damage to the eyes from excessive exposure to ultraviolet light. Kale provides us with this cholesterol lowering benefit whether it is raw or cooked. However, a recent study has shown that the cholesterol lowering ability of raw kale improves significantly when it is steamed. In fact, when the cholesterol lowering ability of steamed kale was compared with the cholesterol lowering ability of the prescription drug cholestyramine (a medication that is taken for the purpose of lowering cholesterol), kale bound 42% as many bile acids (based on a standard of comparison involving total dietary fiber). Amongst all of the cruciferous vegetables, only collard greens scored higher at 46%.
Supports normal blood clotting antioxidant activity and bone health
. The high amount of Vitamin K helps nourishes those activities in the body healthy. Researchers can now identify over 45 different flavonoids in kale. With kaempferol and quercetin heading the list, kales flavonoids combine both antioxidant and anti inflammatory benefits in way that gives kale a leading dietary role with respect to avoidance of chronic inflammation and oxidative stress.
Excellent vegetable sources
. It is one of the excellent vegetable sources for vitamin K; 100 g provides about 700% of recommended intake. Vitamin K has potential role bone health by promoting osteotrophic (bone formation and strengthening) activity. Adequate vitamin K levels in the diet help limiting neuronal damage in the brain; thus, has established role in the treatment of patients suffering from Alzheimers disease.
It is also rich source of minerals
. It is also rich source of minerals like copper, calcium, sodium, potassium, iron, manganese, and phosphorus. Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids that helps controlling heart rate and blood pressure by countering effects of sodium. Manganese is used by the body as a co factor for the antioxidant enzyme, superoxide dismutase. Iron is required for cellular oxidation and red blood cell formation.
. Because of its high vitamin K content, patients taking anti coagulants such as warfarin are encouraged to avoid kale since it increases the vitamin K concentration in the blood, which is what the drugs are attempting to lower. This effectively raises the dose of the drug and causes toxicity. Its leaves contain 0.2 g/100 g of oxalic acid, a value far less than some other comparable greens such as spinach (0.97 g/100) and purslane (1.31 g/100 g). It may be used; however, with caution, even in individuals with known oxalate urinary tract stones. Adequate intake of water is advised to maintain normal urine output.
Source of calcium
. Kale is a great source of calcium and is a good solution to increase bone density, or simply just for building normal healthy bones. Kale also contains quite a bit of potassium, a mineral that helps maintain electrical gradients in the bodys cells. Adequate potassium intake has been linked to reduced blood pressure and a lower risk of heart disease.
. Omega 3 in kale helps delay the damage to brain cells due to high blood sugar in people who are diabetic or are obese. It is also a decent source of magnesium, an incredibly important mineral that most people dont get enough of. Eating plenty of magnesium may be protective against type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
. These green leaves are also found to reduce the bad cholesterol levels.andIt is even more effective when juiced with parsley, green apples and lemon.andLemon, by the way, helps increase absorption rate of nutrition by up to five times!
. Recent studies now recognize kale for its help in the body detoxification system.andIsothiocyanates which are found in kale, when broken down to glucosinolates helps to regulate detoxification activities in the body cells.andTherefore, a regular intake of kale juice helps our body detoxify at a genetic level.
. The high content of chlorophyll in kale helps to improve the hemoglobin level in ones body.andThe chlorophyll molecules are closest to humans hemoglobin molecules, making it one of the best juices for people who are anemic. This tastes absolutely delicious and is a great, crunchy and super healthy snack. A lot of people also add kale to their smoothies in order to boost the nutritional value.
. Kale juice is highly alkaline, and its high content of vitamin K helps improve blood circulation that is helpful for reducing chronic inflammation in patients. Kale is actually loaded with compounds that are believed to have protective effects against cancer. This includes sulforaphane, a substance that has been shown to help fight the formation of cancer at the molecular level.
. One of the few vegetables that contain a decent amount of protein, kale has protein that are better bio available to the body than compared to meat protein. Certainly a great vegetable to add in a vegetarians diet. A popular snack is kale chips, where you drizzle some extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil on your kale, add some salt and then bake in an oven until dry. This tastes absolutely delicious and is a great, crunchy and super healthy snack. A lot of people also add kale to their smoothies in order to boost the nutritional value.
. Kale is an excellent source of calcium, vitamins A, C, K and phytonutrients, all representing requisite nutrients for good skin health. Kale is also one of the richest sources of lutein, and contains beta carotene, both improve our skins elasticity, firmness and keep it healthy.
. Kale contains a high concentration amount of carotenoids (zeaxathin and lutein).andBoth these
. Despite the many health benefits of kale juice, it does contain some amount of oxalates. People with a history of gallbladder or kidney stones should reduce consumption ofandkale. Oxalic acid is otherwise fine for most people when taken raw.andIt is only when cooked that oxalic acid turns INORGANIC. Some people may experience intestinal discomfort, gas, diarrhea or stomach cramps when initially consuming kale juice.andSo with beginners, start with small amounts and listen to how your body responds to it.
Support for Energy Production
. Fresh kale juice comes packed with nutrients your body needs to produce energy. The many B complex vitamins found in the juice work in combination to help you derive energy from nutrients. Iron and copper abundant in kale juice activate enzymes your cells use to generate fuel, and iron also helps deliver the oxygen your cells need to maintain cell metabolism. A quarter cup portion of kale juice provides 1 milligram of iron 6 and 13 percent of the recommended daily iron intakes for men and women, respectively along with 1,055 micrograms of copper, or your entire recommended daily intake.
Drinking More Kale Juice
. Kale juice is best combined with other flavors. Photo Credit pr2is/iStock/Getty Images Because even a small serving size offers major health advantages, one of the major benefits of juicing kale is you can use the juice to easily sneak lots of nutritional value into other beverages and dishes. Kale juice tastes bitter on its own, so combine it with three quarter cup of orange or pineapple juice for a delicious beverage with a superior vitamin and mineral content, compared with a cup of orange or pineapple juice alone. Blend a quarter cup of kale juice with frozen berries, Greek yogurt, ground flaxseed and nonfat milk for a healthful smoothie. Alternatively, add a serving of kale juice to soup to boost its nutrient content.
. Incorporate kale juice into your diet to keep your eyesight sharp. The vitamin A in kale helps you see at night, and it plays a key role in your ability to detect light. The juice also contains lutein and zeaxanthin, two nutrients that promote long term eye health by filtering harmful light rays as they enter your eye, preventing those rays from reaching the sensitive tissues within your eyes. A quarter cup portion of kale juice provides 7,033 international units of vitamin A, which is more than enough to fulfill your recommended daily intake. Each serving of kale juice also provides 5.8 milligrams of lutein and zeaxanthin, or just shy of half the daily intake suggested by the American Optometric Association.
Healthy Blood Cells
. The vitamin A and vitamin K abundant in kale juice help support the function of your red blood cells. Vitamin A guides blood cell development, from immature blood stem cells in your bone marrow into mature and functional blood cells. It boosts red blood cell production, which supports healthy oxygen circulation and also supports the development of white blood cells needed for a robust immune system. Vitamin K controls the function of platelets, helping to ensure that they can aggregate and form blood clots. A serving of kale juice offers 496 micrograms of vitamin K several times your daily vitamin K intake requirement.
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