Kale is a vegetable from the family called brassica. Its scientific name is brassica oleracea. Its a nutritious vegetable that finds its way in many tables worldwide.
Kale is grown in many countries nowadays. Its origin may be in the eastern mediterranean and asia minor. Currently its grown in most parts of Africa even through irrigation methods.
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Kale contains a number of nutrients that have medicinal properties. Some of its nutrients are:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin B6
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin K
In addition to these are a host of phytonutrients and antioxidants that work in unison to bring about their medicinal benefits.
Health Benefits of Kale
Kale has both iron and folate. All these help in boosting the blood production. The blood helps in the transportation of oxygen in the body. This enhances stamina. Kale therefore helps prevent iron deficiency anemia from occurring.
We have two forms of cholesterol. The good cholesterol does not get deposited in our arteries. However, the bad oxidized form is the one that is harmful. It gets deposited in the arteries leading to narrowing and hardening. This condition is often referred to as arteriosclerosis. This narrowing and hardening are at the foundation of promoting cardiovascular diseases such as high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke and problems with memory. There is decreased blood flow, oxygenation and nutrient supply to tissues. The nutrients in kale especially the antioxidants help prevent bad cholesterol depositing in the cardiovascular system.
Kale have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. These are useful in the management of inflammatory responses in conditions such as arthritis, asthma and allergies. The nutrients in kale also promote the repair and healing of damaged articular joint tissues e.g vitamin C.
The eye benefits from the antioxidants in kale that protect the eyes from free radical damage. Therefore vision is enhanced.
The rich antioxidants content including vitamins and minerals all serve a useful purpose in the prevention, halting and reversal of cancer. They help protect free radical damage of the cells DNA that may probably lead to carcinogenesis.
The high calcium content helps increase the bone density. Therefore it may help prevent osteoporosis. It is therefore beneficial in promoting the health of women who are on menopause who tend to have low calcium levels and may develop osteoporosis.
The heart benefits greatly from the the rich kale nutrient properties of preventing bad cholesterol from being deposited in the arteries. The arteries in the heart are cleaned up from clogging leading to improved circulation and oxygenation.
The immune system relies on nutrients to perform optimally. Vitamin C in Kale and antioxidants all play a vital role in protecting the immune system. Kale supplies an adequate amount of these friendly nutrients. It promotes detoxification of the body cells too.
Useful in Pregnancy
In pregnancy, women require more blood because of the foetus. Kale becomes useful due to its rich supply of both iron and folate to help the formation of haemoglobin. Therefore the consumption of kale may help in the prevention of anemia in these cases.
Obesity is a term used to describe an excess of body fat. If you are 20% over the normal weight for your age, sex, build and height then you are considered obese. Obesity puts on undue stress on the back, legs, and internal organs. It is a major contributor in the current proliferation of chronic degenerative conditions e.g cancer, diabetes, arthritis, high blood pressure, stroke and cardiac problems. Kale helps in improving digestive health and also helps lower bad cholesterol deposition inside the body.
It can therefore be seen that kale is a cheap nutritious vegetable that is capable of supplying a number of vital nutrients for our health promotion.
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