Nutritional Information for Kale

Kale is part of the cruciferous veggie family. A nutritional powerhouse like its cousin broccoli, kale has many similar compounds known to fight cancer. It used to be a garnish on dinner plates, but now bursting with popularity you can find kale everywhere– even staring as the main dish! 

Tip: Massage the kale if eating it raw. It helps breaks down the cell wall making it softer and easier to digest. Just rinse and press fingers into kale like shedding paper without actually tearing it.

Want More?

Follow us for health and recipe tips

Blue Cure

Benefits of Kale

Cancer Prevention Benefits

Kale is chock-full of antioxidants and potent cancer fighting phytochemicals. Like other cruciferous vegetables, kale turns on enzymes that help boost DNA repair systems and fight cancer growth in the body. The cruciferous vegetable family, in particular, offers an array of protection due to its cancer-protective compounds. Studies have shown that men eating the most cruciferous vegetables appear to have a 32% lower risk of getting prostate cancer. For men with prostate cancer, eating more cruciferous veggies may help prevent it from spreading further.

Men's Health Benefits

Kale is a great source of calcium and vitamin K, both support bone health. Nutrients in kale help maintain bone integrity and cell function. Loading up on greens increases production of more nitric oxide, which can open the blood vessels and pump more oxygen to the muscles. Greens also help control blood sugar.
Green plants were so important that in 1777, President George Washington told his troops to forage for wild greens for proper health, essentially they would be helpful for warding off putrid diseases. And he may be right. Greens are so powerful that just 3 leaves of spinach can make a difference (31 grams) and has been found to cut skin cancer risk in half.

Ways to Use Kale

  • Add to smoothies, stir fry, salads, curries, sauces, tofu scrambles, sandwiches, wraps, and grain or bean dishes.
  • Roast kale on low heat to make homemade kale chips.
  • Massage kale to make it less bitter and enjoy raw topped with other veggies. 
  • Use in nearly any dish that calls for a green leafy vegetable.
Resources for Kale

“Foods that Fight Cancer” from AICR: Dark Green Leafy Vegetables

Nutrition Facts: www.NutritionFacts.org

Physicians Committee: www.pcrm.org

USDA Nutrient Database: Kale

Citations
  1. Grivetti L, Corlett J, Gordon, B, Lockett C. Food in American History Food in American History: Part 10. Greens: Part 1. Vegetable Greens in a Historical Context Nutrition Today: March/April 2007 – Volume 42 – Issue 2 – pp 88-94.
  2. Hughes C, van der Pols JC, Marks GC, Green AC. Food intake and risk of squamous cell carcinoma of the skin in a community: The nambour skin cancer cohort study. Int. J. Cancer, 119(8):1953-1960, 2006.
  3. Fahey J, Wehage S, Holtzclaw W, et al. Protection of humans by plant glucosinolates: efficiency of conversion of glucosinolates to isothiocyanates by the gastrointestinal microflora. Cancer Prev Res (Phila). 2012;5(4):603-11.
  4. Kirsh V, Peters U, Mayne ST, et al. Prospective study of fruit and vegetable intake and risk of prostate cancer. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2007;99(15):1200-9.
  5. Kolonel LN, Hankin JH, Whittemore AS, et al. Vegetables, fruits, legumes and prostate cancer: a multiethnic case-control study. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2000;9(8):795-804.
  6. Steinbrecher A, Nimptsch K, Hüsing A, Rohrmann S, Linseisen J. Dietary glucosinolate intake and risk of prostate cancer in the EPIC-Heidelberg cohort study. Int J Cancer. 2009;125(9):2179-86.
  7. Richman EL, Carroll PR, Chan JM. Vegetable and fruit intake after diagnosis and risk of prostate cancer progression. Int J Cancer. 2012;131(1):201-10.
  8. Liu B, Mao Q, Cao M, Xie L. Cruciferous vegetables intake and risk of prostate cancer: a meta-analysis. Int J Urol. 2012;19(2):134-41.
  9. Giovannucci E, Rimm EB, Liu Y, Stampfer MJ, Willett WC. A prospective study of cruciferous vegetables and prostate cancer. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2003;12(12):1403-9.
  10. Domínguez-Perles R, Mena P, García-Viguera C, Moreno D. Brassica foods as a dietary source of vitamin C: a review. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2014;54(8):1076-91.
  11. Traka M, Melchini A, Mithen R,  Sulforaphane and prostate cancer interception. Drug Discov Today. 2014;19(9):1488-92.

Leave a Comment