Kale can provide you with some special cholesterol-lowering benefits if you will cook them by steaming. The fiber-related components in kale do a better job of binding together with bile acids in your digestive tract when they've been steamed. When this binding process takes place, it's easier for bile acids to be excreted, and the result is a lowering of your cholesterol levels. Raw kale still has cholesterol-lowering ability—just not as much.
Kale's risk-lowering benefits for cancer have recently been extended to at least five different types of cancer. These types include cancer of the bladder, breast, colon, ovary, and prostate. Isothiocyanates (ITCs) made from glucosinolates in kale play a primary role in achieving these risk-lowering benefits.
Kale is now recognized as providing comprehensive support for the body's detoxification system. New research has shown that the ITCs made from kale's glucosinolates can help regulate detox at a genetic level.
Kale is high in iron – per calorie. Kale has more iron than beef. Iron is essential for good health, such as cell growth, proper liver function and transporting oxygen to various parts of the body. Kale is also a low calorie food, high in fiber and has zero fat. It is one of nature’s or should I say, God’s greatest foods for aiding in digestion and constipation, because of the fiber content.
Kale's cancer preventive benefits have been clearly linked to its unusual concentration of two types of antioxidants, namely, carotenoids and flavonoids. Within the carotenoids, lutein and beta-carotene are standout antioxidants in kale. Researchers have actually followed the passage of these two carotenoids in kale from the human digestive tract up into the blood stream, and they have demonstrated the ability of kale to raise blood levels of these carotenoid nutrients. That finding is important because lutein and beta-carotene are key nutrients in the protection of our body from oxidative stress and health problems related to oxidative stress.
With all these health benefits in mind, consumers should be rushing to the store to stock up on Kale, and not just that, but also learning new and different ways to prepare them. Most people boil greens of all types in pots of water for hours at a time, and that’s ok if you plan on drinking the pot of green water later. Grandma and them used to call this, pot liquor and made us drink a little every day when we had colds because Grandma knew all the nutrients had infused into the water during cooking. That’s why when boiling greens in water; the water turns green because all the color, nutrients and some of the flavor is in the water.
There are many different ways to prepare this delicious and nutritional vegetable, and here are just a few of them. I encourage you to look up recipes for any of these great menu ideas, and at the bottom of this article I’ll leave you with a recipe!
- Boiled Greens (save the water to drink)
- Sautéed Kale
- Kale Chips (oven baked)
- Kale Soup (many varieties)
- Burger w/kale (instead of lettuce)
- Kale and Tomato Frittata
- Kale and Quinoa Salad
- Kale and Bean Soft Taco
- Kale and Vegetable Sand/Sub
- Kale Mushroom and Cheese Quiche
Kale with Pasta, Chicken and Bacon Recipe
INGREDIENTS AND DIRECTIONS:
1 large or 2 small chicken breasts cut into bite size strips
5 slices of turkey bacon cut into bite size pieces
2 garlic gloves, chopped
1 bunch of kale — remove the leaves and chop into big pieces, discard the stems
2 cups chicken broth
3/4 package of whole-wheat linguini
1/2 cup fontina cheese, grated
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
Cook the bacon in a skillet. When it’s crisp remove from the pan and drain grease; then wipe with a paper towel to remove any excess grease. Pour in a teaspoon of olive oil and place the chicken in the skillet. Salt and pepper the chicken and cook until done. Remove from the skillet and place with the bacon. Place a large pot of water on the stove to boil for the pasta. Add the garlic to the skillet and cook for 1 minute, then add the kale and cook until wilted. Add the chicken broth and cook for about 10 minutes, until the kale is very soft. Cook the pasta and drain, but do not rinse. Place it back in the pot and toss in the kale mixture and fontina, stir to combine. Add the chicken and bacon and serve. Makes 4 hearty servings.
REMEMBER FAMILY – EAT TO LIVE DON’T LIVE TO EAT
Healing Chef C.