Kohlrabi is a superfood with a very unusual shape and its origins have been lost in history. A well-known vegetable to the Romans and were likely grown in most part of its empire. In the Roman Imperial cookbook written by Apicius, Kohlrabi was mentioned being used in recipes. The Holy Roman Emperor Charlemagne required that this vegetable be planted in the Imperial garden. Kohlrabi spread to India by the 1600s by means of trade and has become their staple crop. It is now being farmed in China, the Middle East, Africa and many parts of the globe.
It belongs to the Brassica Oleracee family. It is not a root vegetable as what most people think it is, although its name has reference to turnips. Cruciferous plants have stems and bulbs which grow above ground. They are available throughout the year with its peak season during summer.
As for nutritional and health benefits, kohlrabi is loaded with vitamin C that can boost the immune system which is vital in preventing numerous kinds of diseases and also helps in improving absorption of iron and in regenerating vitamin E. Do you know that a cup of kohlrabi contains only about 36 calories?
It is a rich source of dietary fiber that promotes regular bowel movement by maintaining a healthy intestine. Fibers also help in stabilizing the amount of good bacteria in the body, including lowering the risk of ailments of the digestive system. If you’re on a diet, this is your best choice as it makes you feel full longer.
Kohlrabi is also low in cholesterol and saturated fat, resulting to a healthy heart and a good circulatory system. A high level of saturated fats in the body can lead to cardiovascular problems like heart attack.
Just like other vegetable belonging to the Brassica family, Kohlrabi has phytochemicals like indole-3-carbinol, isothiocyanates and Sulforaphane that protects us from colon and prostate cancers.
The potassium that this super veggie carries assures a good nerve and muscle functions. It helps store carbohydrates, which serve as a fuel for the muscle.
Kohlrabi can normalize the sugar imbalance in the body, making it ideal for people with diabetes and hypoglycemia. Its leaves have a good amount of vitamin A which is valuable for good eyesight. It can treat viral infections and Candida.
As for safety concerns, persons with thyroid problem are advised to avoid Kohlrabi or any cruciferous vegetable for that matter, as they contain a compound called goitrogens which causes the thyroid glands to swell.
Try them baked, pureed, boiled, roasted, braised, steamed, BBQ’d or stir-fried…simply delicious!
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