fresh healthy kale

Health benefits of kale

It should come as no surprise that kale is one of the healthiest foods you can eat. Often touted as a ‘superfood’, this leafy green vegetable is packed with vitamins and other nutritional compounds that make it a great addition to any balanced diet.1

What is kale?

Kale is what we call a cruciferous vegetable. Others include cabbage, broccoli, and cauliflower, all of which share a similar flavour with this leafy green. Kale has large edible leaves with a thick, sturdy stem running through their middle.

Although kale is usually dark green, there are some purple varieties which you might be familiar with. You can also have either curly or flat-leaved options. Whichever type of kale you choose, it can be eaten raw, in salads or other cold dishes, or cooked in a variety of ways.

Kale nutritional profile

As well as lots of vitamins and nutrients, 100g of raw kale boasts:

  • 33kcal
  • 4g protein
  • 6g fat
  • 4g carbohydrate
  • 2g fibre2
But its fundamental nutritional values aren’t what makes kale the superfood we know and love. While the term is vague, a superfood generally contains a high concentration of nutrients.3

The health benefits of kale

Let’s explore some of those nutrients in a little more detail.4

B vitamin folate

Folate is an essential B vitamin which we need for several vital functions in the body, including keeping the nervous system healthy.5 We need B vitamins, including folate, to help maintain energy levels and to develop healthy blood cells.

Vitamin C and E

Kale also contains plenty of vitamins C, which are needed to support a healthy immune system.

Did you know? Gram for gram, kale contains more vitamin C than oranges!6

Vitamin K

One of the best-known health benefits of kale is its high concentration of vitamin K, which is used to support the blood clotting process.

Calcium

If you add kale to your diet, you should have no problem getting all the calcium you need from your food. Taking too many calcium supplements can be harmful, so this is a great way to achieve peace of mind when it comes to your nutrition.

Kale works wonderfully well in lots of savoury dishes. Why not experiment? Try tossing some into salads, adding it into pasta, or even slow-roasting a few leaves for a delicious crispy kale snack. The possibilities are almost endless!

Last updated: 8 October 2020

FoodNutrition