What are the health benefits of kale?

Kale is loaded with antioxidants, calcium and fiber. Its closest cousins, spinach and chard, are better known, but kale is a powerhouse vegetable that comes in a variety of colors including green, red, purple and black (dark purple). You want to buy it fresh with crispy leaves, because as it ages in your supermarket, it can become bitter. Use it within three to four days from date of purchase, and keep it wrapped in a damp cloth or paper towel in your refrigerator.

To prepare, rinse it well and tear off the leaves. You can sauté them with a bit of olive oil, or mix with other greens in a salad, raw. Chop it up fine and add to a fresh breakfast egg omelet, soup or as a garnish on top of a dip. You can also drizzle the leaves with olive oil, add salt and pepper, and spread on a baking sheet, baking the leaves at 300 degrees for about 7 or 8 minutes till crisp. Now you’ve got healthy kale chips!!

Nutrition: 1 cup of kale has 33 calories, 1 gram fiber, 329 milligrams potassium, 21 micrograms folate.
Marjorie Nolan Cohn
Nutrition & Dietetics

Kale is high in fiber, three grams per serving, in fact. It’s rich in calcium, vitamin C, folic acid, vitamin B6, manganese, and potassium. With its combination of vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients, kale is a dieter's dream food. Though greens in general are nutritious foods, kale stands out as an excellent source of beta-carotene, one of the antioxidants that battle against cancer, heart disease, and certain age-related chronic diseases. It also provides other important nutrients called carotenoids. Carotenoids help keep UV rays from damaging the eyes and forming cataracts.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.