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What Is Kohlrabi And How Can It Improve Our Heath?
You may have seen one at the grocery store and maybe you have even known its name. But what exactly is kohlrabi and what can it do to make you feel better?
Not only does kohlrabi hail from Germany, it has been called a German turnip. It comes from the same family as broccoli, kale, cabbage, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, and collard greens. Its stems taste like turnips and the taste of the vegetable itself resembles that of a broccoli stem. There are purple and white versions of this stem vegetable but the insides are the same white to cream colored flesh.
Kohlrabi is available from November through March. When selecting your vegetable, make sure it has a little weight to it but avoid those that are cracked or have cuts on the skin. You can keep them at room temperature for up to 5 days and if you plan on holding onto them longer you can store them in the refrigerator.
You can eat kohlrabi raw or cooked. You can also cook the stems of the vegetable as you would spinach, sautéing them in olive oil and garlic. Make sure you remove the tough outer layer of kohlrabi. This vegetable tastes great roasted with a little olive oil and salt, it’s great in soups, it can be made into fritters, and it can be steamed and pureed with some cream added to it. Here are the health benefits of kohlrabi.
1. Weight loss
In the same way that kale was hailed as the new superfood, kohlrabi is being recognized in the same manner. At just 4 calories for a slice, this superfood can be added to your diet with ease. It has zero grams of fat, no cholesterol, 3 mg of sodium, only 1 carbohydrate, and just under 1 gram of fiber. You can find a way that you best enjoy the taste of it and you will be able to eat a substantial portion if you ever feel as though you are too hungry to stay on your diet.
2. Blood pressure
Kohlrabi contains 56 mg of potassium which is responsible for keeping the fluids in your body regulated. It works with sodium in maintaining the movement of fluids through the cells. This takes the strain off of the heart as well as reducing the tension of the arteries and blood vessels. These are all issues that help to reduce your blood pressure and in turn keep issues with your cardiovascular system under control.
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3. Prevents certain types of cancer
Glucosinolates, which are phytochemicals, are some of the most effective antioxidants that have been found to prevent certain types of cancer, in particular, breast and prostate. Kohlrabi contains high amounts of these antioxidants so it is in your best interest to add this vegetable to your diet to prevent contracting these types of cancer.
Even if you do not have problems with your metabolism. Having enough B vitamins in your body on a regular basis will keep your metabolism working at an optimum level. Adding kohlrabi to your diet regularly will ensure that you are getting enough B vitamins which are responsible for keeping your body running smoothly. They will keep your mood elevated and provide you with extra energy to keep you going all day.
5. Builds strong bones
Keeping your bones strong as we age is extremely important. One of the things we can do to help our bones stay strong is to provide them with the best foods that are high in minerals. Kohlrabi is one of those foods and it is high in iron, manganese, and calcium. If your bones are already weak, your chances of hurting yourself unnecessarily as you get older increases and you may find yourself breaking a hip from the slightest touch.
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6. Helps with digestion
Kohlrabi is filled with fiber which is able to keep our digestive systems running smoothly. It helps to keep your bowel movements regular and eliminates any bloating and cramping you might experience. Your body is meant to run smoothly and evenly and you can help it achieve this by feeding it the right nutrients through nutritious foods.
7. Increases levels of iron
Kohlrabi has an impressive amount of iron in it and has been found to raise the level of red blood cells which helps to keep you from developing anemia. Symptoms of an iron deficiency include fatigue, weakness, headaches, and a compromised immune system.
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8. Helps with vision
Along with vitamin A, kohlrabi has plenty of carotenes which help in many areas of the health of your eyes. It has been found to keep you from contracting macular degeneration as you get older as well as reduce the chances of getting cataracts.