When it comes to healthy eating, kale is king! But what’s so great about this leafy green? And what exactly can it do for you? Read on to find out more.
1. Antioxidants: Kale is an excellent source of two natural compounds (carotenoids and flavonoids) with antioxidant properties. These compounds contain several health-supporting nutrients such as lutein, beta-carotene and quercetin that may help protect the body from harmful free radicals.
2. Fiber: With over 5% of your daily value per 1-cup serving, kale is also a good source of dietary fiber, which may support cardiovascular and digestive function.
3. Low Calorie: Kale’s extremely low calorie content (approximately 36 calories per 1-cup serving) makes it an excellent, healthy addition to any snack or meal.
4. Omega-3s: Kale delivers an abundance of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). In fact, eating 100 calories worth of kale will provide you with upward of 35% of the recommended intake for omega-3 essential fatty acids.
5. Vitamin K: A single serving of kale is one of the best nutritional sources of vitamin K, with over 1,000% of your daily value for this nutrient! Vitamin K is important for heart, blood and bone health.
Not sure how to cook it?
Steamed kale just may be your best bet, as this process seems to magnify kale’s health-supporting properties. Simply fill the bottom of a steamer pot with a small amount of water, bring it to a boil and add chopped kale. Steam it for at least 5 minutes and enjoy with olive oil or your favorite dressing.