Kale, A Vegetable Antiquity.
Most consumers today would likely categorize kale as a newly popularized vegetable. The humble green kale has experienced an explosive rise in the American food market over the last decade. Kale can be found in almost any grocery store, restaurant menu and even cafeteria lines. What you might not realize, is that kale, in one form has been cultivated and consumed by humans for at least the past two thousand years. Greek and Roman households grew green, leafy members of the Kale (Brassica family) as an important component of their healthy diets as early as 1000 AD. Kale made its way to Europe and eventually North America playing a vital role in winter vegetable production providing essential vitamins and minerals during the cold, nutritionally lacking months of the year.
Nutritional Powerhouse. Kale provides essential health building and disease fighting nutrients for our bodies. This leafy green is naturally low in fat and chart topping high in vitamins A, K, C and B6. Vitamin K is a health promoting nutrient performing in maintaining a healthy bone structure and density as well as a leading antioxidant fighting inflammation in the body. Among its healthy attributes, kale brings texture, flavor and fiber to a well balanced plate.
Shining the spotlight on lesser known healthful traits of this green, kale boasts more vitamin C than the popular orange fruit. Kale will win over vegans and lactose-intolerant consumers alike providing more calcium per serving than milk. Replacing commodity and highly seasonal products with the plant-based nutrition of kale provides consumers with an alternative to higher priced goods.
The health promoting effects of nutrients found in kale work together with those found in other foods like healthy fats. The way in which our digestive tracts break down and process kale and other members of the (Brassica family) have shown promise in lowering the risk of numerous cancers. Keeping kale in your dietary rotation will provide the benefits of high nutrition in one convenient plant.
Stress Less with Prep.
Cooking at home should be beneficial to your health. So many of us have limited time to prepare a meal at home while keeping our plates balanced and healthy. Meal planning and food preparation is essential to lowering stress in the kitchen and increasing the health of our meals. Keeping ingredients fresh and stored properly will save time and money.
In order to preserve the health giving properties of kale, store in refrigeration. Once purchased from the store, market, or farm; kale should be washed to remove any dirt or agricultural pesticide residue. Once kale is washed, pat dry and place in an airtight container in the refrigerator. If your time is at a premium and meal preparation is not part of the equation, consider a meal delivery service to provide for your needs. There is a diverse market for this service that can provide everything from entire meals ready to heat and serve to ingredient packages carefully crafted to your specifications along with recipes to make an outstanding meal preparation experience.
Know Your Kale.
With the world singing kale’s mighty praises, it is important to be an informed consumer. Kale is grown throughout the United States, being available to purchase nearly year-round. Varying weather patterns and extreme growing conditions can create a competitive market for this high demand green. Choosing organically grown kale over convention kale reduces your exposure to toxic pesticides. Keep your kale as healthy as nature intended by making well informed purchases.
The Green Light For Kale.
Kale deserves its modern resurgence as the health giving queen of the vegetable kingdom. Eating just one serving of kale per day is a mighty step towards living a healthier life. Taking a note from the ancient Greeks and Romans, kale should be in our gardens and on our plates.