13 Things You Didn’t Know About Kale

Contributor
Learn more about what kale can do for your mind and body
kale

Shutterstock

This popular leafy green is more nutrient dense than most vegetables and fruits.

Kale is one of the most popular names on the list of healthy foods and it has been deemed a superfood based on its nutrient profile. Due to high levels of vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients, this green vegetable should be included in your diet.

Click here for the 13 Things You Didn’t Know About Kale slideshow.

Similar to any food or food group, kale should be eaten in moderation because eating large amount of leafy greens can cause bloating, gas, and constipation. In addition, conventionally produced kale is known to contain numerous pesticides, so it is best to buy organic kale when you can.

Despite the hype that has spiraled over the past several years, kale has been around for a while and it will not be leaving the list of the healthiest vegetables anytime soon. Kale offers benefits for the brain, heart, bones, skin, and hair. The nutritional properties of kale have also been linked to lowering the risk of cancer and developing diabetes. Incorporating kale into your meals, or snacking on kale chips, can improve your overall health and help you maintain a healthy weight.

Antioxidant Powerhouse

kale

Photo Modified: Flickr / Noelle / CC BY 4.0

Kale is filled with antioxidants.

Kale is rich in sulfur, which helps produce glutathione, one of the most important antioxidants in the body. Kale also contains lutein and zeaxanthin, which function as antioxidants in the body and improve eyesight. “This pair of antioxidants combines to increase the amount of pigment in your macula, which means protection from the sun and a lower risk of macular degeneration,” said Melissa Walshe, a writer for Guiding Stars, a nutritional guidance program.

Better to Eat with Something Else

kale salad

Photo Modified: Flickr / Stacy / CC BY 4.0

Pair kale with other nutritious foods.

Kale has enough benefits on its own but your body can benefit even more if you pair your kale with other healthy foods. Healthy fats, such as olive oil, avocado, or almond butter can combine with kale to make fat-soluble carotenoids more available to the body.