Of course, there are many potential health benefits from eating kale!
Along with all the other leafy super green vegetables, kale has a place alongside them in smoothies, salads, healthy recipes, health supplements and more.
Kale has risen to prominence in the recent years it seems and now sits alongside spinach in many supermarkets and in the fruit and vegetable shops.
People in the know acknowledge kale and its greatness, but to those who may not know that much about kale, it may just look like another food fad that will run its course.
So don’t walk past this vegetable in the supermarket isle like you once did and let’s look into the world of kale now to explain to you just some of the reasons why we use it in some of our Super Cubes formulas.
What is kale?
Kale is another leafy green vegetable (we’ve written about many) that has a long history, with reports of it the dating back to the fourth century BC where the forerunner to today’s kale strains were grown, used and eaten.
During history kale has been used for many reasons, originally due to its resilience in adverse growing conditions and more recently due to kales wonderful potential health benefits.
With so many varieties of kale across so many countries there are characteristics that separate them based on their stems and leaf types.
There are four types of different leaf for kale, these include curly leaf kale, bumpy leaf kale, plain leaf kale and, finally, the leaf and spear type kale.
In Australia, some of the main varieties you will find on the supermarket shelf are the bumpy leaf kale, curly leaf kale and the baby kale leaf.
You may still be wondering why do people use kale in their smoothies and why is kale so good for you?
Read on to find out more.
What are the health benefits of kale?
Whether you are using kale in a main meal, as a side dish, in salads, in your soups, stews or blending it in with your daily smoothie’s, kale is readily available, well priced and packed with nutritional goodness.
Here are some of the health benefits of kale which we will explain in more detail below.
- High in antioxidants
- Superb source of vitamins and minerals
- Anti-inflammatory effects
- Naturally detoxing
Again, similar to the benefits of silverbeet, kale has very high nutritional value in several key areas which make it such a great addition to everyone’s daily nutrition plan.
High in antioxidants
Most of the leafy greens we have covered (and use) are high in antioxidants and there are many ways antioxidants can help you.
Antioxidants are one of the good guys in relation to scavenging free radicals from your body’s cells, so they help reduce and sometimes prevent the damage that’s caused by oxidation.
Free radicals can naturally form and grow in different circumstances, these can be during exercise, conversion of food to energy, bad environment and stress.
An easy to visualise way of looking at how antioxidants may work in your body is envisioning a steel bar left outside in the weather.
What does it do? It rusts!
In the same way rust affects the steel bar, oxidation can affect your body if left to run its natural course with no intervention from antioxidants.
Superb source of Vitamins and Minerals
Kale has quite high levels of vitamins and minerals and these levels can help you to reach your daily targets of required nutrients.
It's a great source of magnesium, potassium, calcium vitamin K, vitamin C, vitamin A and more.
Getting more of these essential vitamins and minerals from the healthy foods you eat helps your body to work properly and stay in good health.
So kale is a great addition to anyone’s daily, weekly or monthly nutrition plan.
Anti-inflammatory (in the vegetable world) generally refers to a vegetable that helps to reduce inflammation and swelling, although it can mean much more.
Kale has levels of omega-3 and omega-6 in its nutrient makeup, both of these fats our bodies can’t produce, but they are key to helping us stay in good health.
Omega-6 is needed but they are inflammatory, while the omega-3 fats are anti-inflammatory.
So you do need both to have a balance, although having a tip towards omega-3 would be the preferable choice (kale has marginally more omega-3).
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What nutrients are in kale?
As you can see above, kale is classed as one of those nutrient dense, leafy green superfood’s because of its potential health benefits from its antioxidant, vitamins, minerals and phytonutrient levels.
Here is a rundown of the nutrient levels in 100 grams of kale and as you will see, it does pretty well.Energy 50 kcal
Total fat 0.94g
Vitamin C 120mg
Vitamin B6 0.269mg
Vitamin A 500µg
Vitamin K 705µg
Using kale in Super Cubes
Kale isn’t everyone’s cup of herbal tea when it comes to eating it alone or adding it to your salads.
To be honest some of the varieties are very tough to eat and some can also can be very tart on your palate too.
This is just one of the reasons we add it into some of our Super Cubes frozen smoothies, it takes away the guess work for you on how you are going to get your kale quota for the week.
You just need to blend and drink with Super Cubes!
The other reason that comes to mind is it’s one of the most nutrient dense leafy green vegetables on the planet, so why wouldn’t we include it in our formulas.
Kale, it certainly is a powerful superfood for everyone!