Welcome to this week’s Kohlrabi Spotlight! Kohlrabi is yet another vegetable I didn’t know about until I started looking up different seeds to plant in my garden. This one is definitely different than the vegetables I’m used to and has a unique flavor.
Kohlrabi got its name from a German term for “cabbage-turnip,” which is basically what it is. The density is similar to a turnip or potato, but the flavor is similar to a mild cabbage. It’s usually considered a root crop, but it’s the stem, not the root, that’s eaten.
The leaves can be eaten as well. Purple kohlrabi is a bit spicier than the light green kohlrabi, which is sweeter.
It’s not as popular in US households as it is in Europe. Part of the Brassica family, including cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, collard greens, and Brussels sprouts, this vegetable requires well-drained fertile soil and average sunlight to flourish.
Let’s dive into the health benefits:
A medium-sized kohlrabi ball is only 50 calories and provides 6 grams fiber, no fat/cholesterol, and 180% daily value for Vitamin C.
It’s full of nutrients and minerals like copper, potassium, manganese, iron, phosphorus, and calcium, as well as vitamin C, B-complex vitamins, vitamin A, and vitamin K.
Digestive Health: Kohlrabi is a great source of fiber that can improve your digestive health. Fiber helps keep you moving, which also maximizes your nutrient uptake efficiency.
Weight Loss Booster: Kohlrabi is a great diet vegetable, because it’s low in calories, high in fiber, and packed with beneficial nutrition. Fiber makes you feel full, preventing you from snacking between meals or overeating. And the amount of vitamin C in kohlrabi may enhance your body’s fat burning capabilities during a workout because the properties of vitamin C are linked to the production of carnitine, a substance that encourages your body to burn fat into fuel (energy), instead of storing it as a body fat.
Nerve and Muscle Function: Potassium is one of the key players in muscle and nerve behavior in the body. It helps us to move, breathe, react, and function daily.
Blood Pressure: Potassium also helps reduce the strain on the cardiovascular system by easing the tension of blood vessels and arteries. This can increase circulation throughout the body, and lower the risk of cardiovascular events like strokes and heart attacks. Potassium is also a key part of fluid regulation in the body, as it works with sodium to regulate fluid movement between cells. Potassium helps control your heart rate and blood pressure by countering effects of sodium
Iron Deficiency: The significant levels of iron found in kohlrabi go hand-in-hand with the potassium content, as iron helps to increase the red blood cell count in the body, which is essential to prevent anemia (iron deficiency), which is characterized by weakness, fatigue, headaches, stomach disorders, disorientation, and general immune system failure.
Bone Strength: Eating mineral-rich foods like kohlrabi, with high manganese, iron, and calcium contents can help prevent your bones from weakening. Kohlrabi also contains vitamin K which allows your bones to absorb the calcium to make them stronger.
Immune System Strength: Vitamin C helps keep your immune system strong and healthy. Vitamin C can also help keep your skin supple and your bones strong due to its strong antioxidant properties and its ability to stimulate collagen production within your body
Vision Health: Vitamin A helps strengthen your vision. Kohlrabi is a rich source of carotenes, including beta-carotene, which acts as an antioxidant compound in the body, particularly in the ocular area. Vitamin A can help to prevent or slow down cataracts. This is done by neutralizing the free radicals in the eye and preventing oxidative stress.
Metabolism: People who want to regulate their metabolism should try kohlrabi, which is a rich source of B-vitamins. B-vitamins play a key role in enzymatic processes within the body. This network of reactions and processes determines how functional and efficient our bodies are, so make sure to add B-vitamin-rich foods like kohlrabi to your weekly diet.
Cancer Prevention: Kohlrabi is one of those vegetables that has high levels of phytochemicals, particularly glucosinolates, which are considered some of the most important antioxidant compounds for the prevention of cancer.
Make sure to stop by on Saturday for our kohlrabi recipe.
Hope you enjoyed the Kohlrabi Spotlight! Until next time, Stay Healthy!