One of the healthiest things we can do for our bodies is to eat kale. So you’re probably asking, what the heck is kale, and why is it so great for me?
Kale is a leafy green veggie that comes from the same family as cabbage, collard greens, bok choy, arugula, and Brussel sprouts. It looks similar to a dark green form of lettuce. Kale was grown in Europe and wound up in the US when people settled here hundreds of years ago.
Kale is at its best when it is really dark green and the stems are tough. The best time of year to buy kale is during the winter months, up until the start of spring, although you can purchase kale all year round.
Now that you know what kale is, it is important to understand what it can do for your body. Kale has one of the highest levels of antioxidants of any vegetable that you can buy! It also has one of the highest levels of carotenes. People are always talking about how great broccoli is for you- well kale kicks broccoli’s butt in the good health competition. While broccoli is great for you, kale is leaps and bounds better with the vitamins and minerals it provides.
One serving (or cup) of kale has about 30 calories and 1- 2 grams of fiber. Eating kale daily can give you about 5% of your daily fiber intake without adding hardly any calories at all. Kale also delivers protein and heart healthy omega three fatty acids to your body.
“When people chew on raw kale, the kale creates enzymes to help your liver detoxify cancer causing issues in your body.”
Kale is full of vitamins, like: Vitamin A, K, B6, as well as niacin, riboflavin, thiamin, calcium, iron, protein, magnesium, and more. Many people aim to get kale into their diets because it helps to lower cholesterol and can decrease your chances of getting cancers like breast cancer, colon cancer, ovarian cancer, or prostate cancer. Kale is also a natural antioxidant and anti-inflammatory. Kale naturally detoxifies your body and keeps you feeling healthy and full of energy. When people chew on raw kale, the kale creates enzymes to help your liver detoxify cancer causing issues in your body.
So now that you’re aware how great kale is for the body, the question becomes how to eat it. One of the best things to do is to steam kale. Steamed kale is the easiest way for the fiber to become absorbed within your body, and can help to make your body stronger to fight health problems. Raw kale is great for you as well, but the process of steaming enhances your benefits.
To steam kale, it is best to add other ingredients to spice things up; otherwise you will get bored with just kale alone. One great recipe is to sauté chopped garlic in olive oil and salt and pepper. Add chopped kale to the pan along with lemon juice, vegetable stock, and steam for at least 5 minutes or until the kale becomes soft.
Kale is a great side dish to accompany any main meal, and it can also be incorporated in a number of recipes you can find online. Kale is a great addition to salads and soups. It only takes mere minutes to steam so there are no excuses for leaving this super healthy leafy green vegetable out of your diet! The more creative you can be the better, as it is a great idea to try to get kale into your daily diet.