What’s on My Plate? Kale, a type of cabbage revered for its health benefits. Though this leafy vegetable is not indigenous to India, it is referred to as ‘karam saag’ in Hindi, and has slowly and steadily found a place on Indian shelves.
Superpower: Kale is considered to be the king of all green leafy vegetables. It’s a well-earned title considering there is hardly a nutrient this superfood isn’t a rich source of. According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), kale is bursting with vitamins A, C, and K; and also boasts of iron, copper, manganese, and folate in good amounts. In its food composition database, the USDA also ranks kale number one in its list of lutein-containing foods. Lutein is a carotenoid (a type of anti-oxidant) that acts as a shield against eye disorders, like macular degeneration, and keeps your skin from falling prey to UV rays of the sun and delays ageing. Moreover, a regular dose of kale can also thwart heart disease and cancer, and help suppress inflammation in the body.
Where to Buy: Kale is now available in most supermarkets. Many organic grocery stores also stock this uber-healthy cruciferous veggie. Much like lettuce and cabbage, you can also grow kale in your backyard. A hardy plant, you can sow kale seeds in autumn and harvest the yield in winter.
Eat This: Sautéed, steamed, and pressure cooked – you can relish kale with a pinch of salt and a hint of garlic. If you want to entice your taste buds you can bake crispy kale chips; add it to your morning omelette; feature it in pastas, fried rice, and noodles; make soups and salads; or even transform it into a pizza topping.
Discover More Superfoods
Rich in nutritional value, superfoods are the easiest way to boost the health quotient of your daily meals. To discover more superfood ingredients, check out the rest of our superfood series:
Amla: This superfood can fix every part of your body! Don’t believe us? Read on to find out the health benefits of amla.
Ashwagandha: Can’t get sleep? Check out the sleep-inducing and other health-promoting properties of the Ayurveda-approved Ashwagandha.
Basil or Tulsi: Apart from simply adding flavor to meals, basil brings with it several medicinal properties. Check out the number of health conditions for which basil can come to your rescue.
Black Carrots: You’ve seen the red ones and you’ve seen the orange ones, but ever witnessed black carrots? Check out how they look and their many health benefits.
Brahmi: Are you afraid of the increasing rates of Alzheimer’s disease? Include this superfood in your diet to boost your brain health. Read about the other health benefits of Brahmi.
Camu Camu: One of the richest sources of Vitamin C, this superfood comes all the way from the Amazon rainforest! Read about its health benefits.
Chia Seeds: This Mexican native is now being used in many Indian kitchens. Check out the various health benefits of chia seeds.
Chilli: Do you love to eat spicy food? Well, good news! Check out how those spicy chilies boost your health.
Dandelion: Not only do they brighten up your garden, but dandelions also boost your health. Confused about how you can include this flower in your diet? We have answers for you right here.
Jamun: Apart from tinting your tongue purple, jamun has several medicinal properties. Here’s why you must include jamun in your diet.
Hog Plum: Looking for a remedy to cure ulcers? Tired of getting diarrhea every time you eat out? Hog plum can come to your rescue! Check out the amazing health benefits of this not so popular superfood.
Karela: Reading this will prevent you from screwing up your face every time someone mentions karela.
Kokum: Along with being a refreshing summer drink, kokum also helps you shed extra kilos. Find out more about the sour and fruity kokum.
Makhana or Lotus Seeds: It is rapidly becoming the choice of snack for weight watchers. Check out the nutrient profile of this incredible superfood.
Moringa or Drumstick: Looking to boost your iron and calcium levels? Don’t restrict yourself to just meat and milk. Know more about moringa and how this superfood can be made a part of your diet.
Mushrooms: These fungi are loaded with nutrients. Click here to know why you should be consuming them more often.
Muskmelon: The juicy and aromatic muskmelon has several health-boosting properties. Find out more about this nutritious fruit.
Ragi: This grain has made its way into the plates of many. From ragi dosa and idli to ragi porridge, it is being promoted in the diets of old and young. Find out why health experts are recommending this superfood.
Sabja: Slurped a tall glass of falooda? If it had sabja seeds, you have no reason to feel guilty. Click here to know why!
Sacha Inchi: These nut-like seeds are rich in omega-3. Check out the other health benefits they have in store for you!
Sweet Potato: A rich source of Vitamin A and fiber, sweet potato is a great alternative to the white potato. Take a look at all the reasons why you need to include it in your diet.
Tofu: Often known as the vegan cousin of paneer, tofu is derived from soybean and comes loaded with protein and minerals. Read more about the health benefits of tofu.
Turmeric: Think twice before you say no to “haldi wala doodh”. Find out why your grandma trusts turmeric for every infection.
Zucchini: Did you know that you can use your favourite zucchini not only in pasta and pizza, but also in a cake? Wondering how it’s possible? Click here to know more.
Images courtesy: Shutterstock