Just a trend or is there something more powerful in kale?
Kale is an extremely versatile ingredient, with a solid nutritional "footprint." It belongs to the family of cabbage and green-leafy vegetables, which are known for its rich dietary composition. Kale is most commonly found in green or violet color, and curved or smooth, longer leaves can recognize it.
Kale is an exquisitely rich ingredient. It contains a lot of minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants: vitamins A, K, C, B1, B2 and B3, B6, calcium, copper, magnesium and potassium. It is also extremely low in fats, which are packed in omega 3 fatty acids. Due to its rich composition and the low level of caloric composition, kale is one of the best ingredients on the nutritional scale. So it's not only the fact that it is trendy, but it's a real vegetable king.
An excellent source of vitamin C and many great antioxidants
Vitamin C is an essential water-soluble antioxidant, which our body needs for many vital functions. We need it in the process of synthesis of collagen - the most abundant structural protein in our body. Kale thus contains as much as 4.5 times more vitamin C than spinach, which we like to add to plates mainly for our little ones. A cup of raw kale contains even more vitamin C than one an orange.
It contains a lot of antioxidants, molecules that help us prevent and slow down the oxidation of other molecules. This means it stops the formation of free radicals in the body and therefore stops the cell damage, such as cancer.
With a regular consumption of kale we directly influence on lowering the level of cholesterol in the blood, thereby help to prevent the development of heart disease. In a study carried out at Yonsei University in South Korea in 2008, it was shown that, at the 12-week daily consumption of raw juice made of kale, a good cholesterol level is raised by 27%, while bad cholesterol drops by a tenth.
Kale also contains vitamin K, which is essential for blood clotting, while the cup of raw kale contains as many as seven times the daily intake of this vital vitamin.
In short, kale contains all the most essential ingredients, which are most commonly consumed during our diet.
How can we use kale?
We mostly use kale since the stems are too hard for consumption. When making a juice, you can also use stalks in the juicer.
Kale can be consumed raw, for example in a salad. It's important that you mix it well with a pinch of salt, olive oil, and lemon. This can be a great base for a Buddha bowl or an addition to the salad (if we cut it in small quantities, its specific taste will practically not be detected), a sandwich or a wrap. Kale is also a great addition in various types of soups. And of course as chips.
Kale's season is from early autumn until March. It is incredibly undemanding and you can easily grow it without special attention on the home garden or a balcony.