With the extreme ups and downs of the weather here in southern Ontario plus the complete lack of sun this winter viruses are running wild. So of course the question on everyone’s lips is “which super food should I be eating more of”? My answer: Is there such a thing as the perfect food? Are superfoods really that super? Make sure you eat a rainbow of vegetables! In all honesty there is no single food that will keep you healthy; the immune system needs a variety of nutrients and a slightly alkaline bodily environment to do its job effectively.
BUT if you have to have one thing to add to your diet then Kale makes the list of foods we should not live without. Let’s delve into what’s so special about this rich, deep green vegie.
While kale is not my favorite green around it has become a staple in the kitchen due to its high nutrient content and versatility; also my daughter is in love with this leafy guy. With 10000 mg of vitamin A, 550 of vitamin K and 80 of vitamin C per cup of chopped leaves; this green goes a long way to keeping the body in check. An important factor to staying well while those around you are sick is keeping the body’s acid-base balance in check. With the western diet chocked full of acid forming foods kale is alkaline. Meaning it helps to neutralize the excess acid levels in the body. Good news considering that viruses like to set up shop in acidic environments. So what else does kale offer us?
In these times where the body is constantly under attack from oxidizing agents looking to wage war on our bodies it is always a good idea to stock up on antioxidants. Kale is one of the leaders in this fight. With 45 antioxidant flavonoids kale does its job keeping oxidative stress at bay.
Omega-3 and Vitamin K are in high supply making this leafy green a great way to fight inflammation. Chronic inflammation can lead to damage of the brain, heart and other organs. With over 40 different health concerns (including: diabetes, depression and osteoarthritis) related to chronic inflammation this is one superfood we can’t afford to live without.
The type of fiber found in kale has a special ability to bind with bile. This allows the body to excrete fats thus using up cholesterol; supporting a healthy cardiovascular system. For a full description of this process see the article on kale by WHFoods.
While superfoods are not the fountain of youth nor will they ensure you never get ill; they can in fact help us live healthier lives. Here are a few of my favorite recipes to add kale to your diet today!