Health Benefits of Kale

Kale is king. Along with broccoli, it is one of the nutrition stand-outs among vegetables. It fights fat through its ability to mingle in a variety of roles -- in side dishes, combined in main dishes, or in salads.

smoky kale chiffonade
Kale is the main ingredient in
the
smoky kale chiffonade recipe.

For a green, kale is unusually high in fiber. This helps create the bulk you need to fill you up and to keep you full for a good amount of time. Kale is also an excellent source of nutrients, especially vitamin A and calcium. With a combination of vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients, kale is a dieter's dream food.

Health Benefits of Kale

Though greens in general are nutritious foods, kale stands a head above the rest. Not only is it one of your best sources of beta-carotene, one of the antioxidants
believed by many nutrition experts to be a major player in the battle against cancer, heart disease, and certain age-related chronic diseases, it also provides other important nutrients.

In addition to beta-carotene, kale posses other important carotenoids
: lutein and zeaxathin. These carotenoids help keep UV rays from damaging the eyes and causing cataracts.

According to recent research results, kale is an incredible source of well-absorbed calcium, which is one of the many factors that may help prevent osteoporosis. It also provides decent amounts of vitamin C, folic acid, vitamin B6, manganese, and potassium.

The manganese in kale helps your body's own antioxidant defense system, superoxide dismutase, protecting you from damaging free radicals. Its folate and B6 team up to keep homocysteine levels down, which may help prevent heart disease, dementia, and osteoporosis bone fractures.

Nutritional Values of Cooked Kale
Serving Size: 1/2 cup

Calories 18
Fat 0 g
Saturated Fat
0 g
Cholesterol 0 mg
Carbohydrate 4 g
Protein 1 g
Dietary Fiber 1 g
Sodium
15 mg
Vitamin A
8,854 IU
Folic Acid 9 micrograms
Vitamin C 27 mg
Calcium 47 mg
Magnesium 15 mg
Potassium 148 mg
Carotenoids 17,172 micrograms

Want more information about kale? Try:
  • Vegetable Recipes: Find delicious recipes that feature kale.
  • Nutrition: Find out how kale fits in with your overall nutrition plans.
  • Vegetable Gardens: Grow a full harvest of great vegetables this year.
  • Gardening: We answer your questions about all things that come from the garden.
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