• October - Kale


    During the month of October and into winter months kale is more plentiful, although thankfully it is generally available all year round.

    Kale is a part of the brassica family which includes Broccoli, Cauliflower and Brussels sprouts. In recent times it has earned the title of one of the worlds healthiest foods. Although, it would be fair to point out that it has been cultivated for over 2,000 years, it seems that only now we are appreciating this beautiful, health giving vegetable.

    Leaf Types

    - Curly-leaved (Scots Kale ,blue curled kale)
    - Plain-leaved
    - Rape kale
    - Leaf and spear
    - Bumpy-leaved (black cabbage)

    The benefits of eating kale
    Kale can be eaten raw, baked, steamed, stir fried and boiled. The nutrient content varies according to your chosen method of consuming. Therefore, alternating your cooking methods or choosing raw can help you optimise the nutrients, leading to greater health benefits.

    The amazing benefits of kale have been attributed to reducing cancer risk, five cancers have been shown to be affected, these include bladder, breast, colon, ovary and prostate. If that is not enough, kale has amazing anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties too. This means that kale plays a role in reducing chronic inflammation and oxidant stress, both of which lead to a plethora of unwanted health conditions.

    Where do the benefits come from?

    A quick insight into some of the vitamins and minerals and the role they play in the rest of the body.

    Vitamin A
    - Maintains normal skin function
    - Maintains healthy vision
    - Promotes a healthy functioning immune system
    - Maintains neurological function
    - Reduces inflammation, through fighting free radical damage.

    Vitamin C
    - Supports the immune system
    - Increases iron absorption
    - Protects cells from oxidating damage
    - Helps reduce the risk of heart disease, including coronary heart disease and stroke
    - Helps in the formation of collagen, carnitine and catecholamines.

    Vitamin K
    - Promotes normal healthy blood clotting
    - Prevents heart disease and arterial calcification
    - Improves vascular health, leading to fewer varicose veins
    - Maintains healthy bones
    - Acts as an adjunct to vitamin D
    - Helps to reduce the risk of developing prostrate cancer, lung cancer, liver cancer, and leukemia.

    Manganese - Mineral
    - Supports the formation of healthy bones through absorption of calcium
    - Supports collagen production
    - Helps with blood sugar control
    - Contributes to the prevention of oxygen related damage and damage from ultraviolet (UV) light
    - Antioxidant, fights free radical damage. Diets low in Manganese have been linked to skin problems and asthma
    - Proper functioning of the thyroid gland
    - Promotes metabolism of fats and carbohydrates

    Copper - Mineral
    - Helps to maintain blood volume
    - Produces energy in your cells from carbohydrates
    - supports the building of strong tissue, including hair and eyes
    - Involved in the manufacturing of collagen
    - Helps to maintain a healthy balance of cholesterol
    - Assists in the prevention of premature ageing

    Tryptophan - An essential amino acid

    - Essential in maintaining Serotonin, 'The happy hormone'
    - Improves sleep quality
    - Helps manage depression
    - Depletion can lead to mood changes, impaired memory, anxiety, aggressive behaviour and stress

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    Holland & Barrett, the good life.

    I Quit Sugar for Life: Your fad-free wholefood wellness code and cookbook.

    Forks Over Knives.

    The Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted and the Startling Implications for Diet, Weight Loss and Long-term Health.

    Healing Beyond Medicine: How self-empowerment, a raw vegan diet, and change of lifestyle can free us from sickness and disease.

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