Oh, Kale Yeah!
Oh, kale. You wonderful vegetable, you! Here at the Pranin Organic head office, you will find kale in our lunchroom on a regular, sometimes daily, basis.
There’s so much to love about kale! In its whole food form, it packs a great nutritional punch, and with the different varieties of kale available, you can keep it interesting by using it in so many different dishes.
WHY IS KALE GOOD FOR MY HEALTH?
Kale is a good source of minerals like iron, copper and calcium, which we all know are important for keeping anemia and osteoporosis at bay. Kale is rich in vitamin A, B6, C, and K. Vitamin A is an antioxidant that helps with skin health, vision, neurological function and protects the immune system and lungs. Vitamin K plays a key role in protecting the body from chronic inflammation and related diseases. Vitamin C is also a powerful antioxidant that helps with immune function, prevents cardiovascular disease, fights inflammation and helps keep healthy hair, skin, and nails.
Kale is also a rich source of flavonoids like beta carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin, which provideantioxidant and anti -cancer properties. These antioxidants are particularly useful in protecting your eyes from macular degeneration.
Indole-3-carbonol (I3C), aphytonutrient found in kale, has been found to protect against certain cancers like breast cancer, as it binds onto excess estrogens.
HOW SHOULD I COOK KALE?
To get the most nutrients as possible from your kale, you need to make sure you neutralize the anti-nutrients found on the leaves.
What are anti-nutrients, you ask? They sound scary, but no need to worry. Anti-nutrients are naturally occurring substances on the leaves that can interfere with the absorption of the nutrients. They won’t cause you any harm, but they’re easy to remove. All you need is to lightly cook the leaves by either blanching, steaming, or sautéing them. Be sure to not overcook kale, as this can destroy all those wonderful vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients that you need. When the leaves turn a brighter colour of green, you’re good to go!
If you want to enjoy the kale raw without cooking it, simply take a small amount of olive oil or coconut oil in your hands, and lightly massage it into the leaves. This helps to break down the anti-nutrients without using heat.
Check out our recipe section for some plant-based culinary inspiration!