People come in all shapes and sizes and the same is true for leafy greens. Collard greens are a healthy large-leafed vegetable from the same family as kale, cabbage, and broccoli. Like its cousins, collard greens are a vegetable you’ll want in your diet.
Collard greens are an old vegetable, used similarly as kale.
Collard greens are large leaves that can be enjoyed raw, boiled, fried, or cooked. The leaves have a large thick stem down the centre that’s completely edible, and is often cut out, chopped up and used similarly to celery.
Because collards are such large, sturdy leaves, they have been a popular and healthy substitute to wraps and other bread products. They taste great and are such an easy gluten-free sandwich option. Out of all of the ways you can prepare collards, this is probably our favourite. We love practical, healthy food.
The age of the leaf doesn’t affect the flavour as much as the texture of the leaf. Full-grown collard greens are thicker and denser. Typically the leaves are picked while they’re still fairly young, which keeps them soft and easily edible.
Collard greens are packed with nutrients. They are a good source of protein, niacin, thiamin, vitamin C, vitamin E, riboflavin, vitamin B6, folate, calcium, manganese, dietary fibre, and potassium. They’re a fantastic source of vitamin K, and vitamin A.
Collard greens are a cruciferous vegetable. Like other cruciferous veggies, collard greens are a good source of vitamin A, C, E, K, folate, and many minerals. Plus they are a good source of fibre. All of these nutrients tied together in this green package become a powerful healer in the body. It reduces inflammation, protects against DNA damage and tumor blood vessel formation, and has antiviral and antibacterial effects.
There are many studies that show the effects of a diet rich in cruciferous vegetables has on the risk of cancer. The risk of prostate, colorectal, lung, and breast cancer all go down when these foods are a regular part of your diet.
Vitamin K is crucial for proper blood flow and clotting. This is a necessary vitamin in order to sustain life.
The vitamin A in collard greens is great for slowing down the aging process of skin, helping you age more gracefully. Vitamin A improves the look of wrinkles, and helps slow the continued aging process of skin. There are a few main reasons vitamin A has this effect. The first is that it works as an antioxidant and reduces inflammation in the skin. It then also helps retain moisture in the skin, and increases collagen production. This is the perfect recipe for healthy, younger-looking skin.
Collard greens are also great for weight loss. This plant is low in calories and sugar-free, plus it is high in nutrients, and dietary fibre. The fibre is great for your gut, clearing waste and toxins from the body. Also, the high levels of vitamins help nourish your body, giving it what it needs, keeping to from having to send signals to the brain telling you to eat (asking for more nutrients).
Collard greens are a practical, healthy choice. This week try scratching bread off of your grocery list and add collard greens instead.