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Healthy Diet Plans >>  Therapeutic Value of Different Foods >>  Vegetables >>  Collard Greens

Collard Greens

The vegetables that belong to the Brassica family are a lot. There are cabbages, cauliflowers, broccolis, Brussels sprouts, and collard greens. The latter has long been a popular veggie among the people living within the southern part of the United States. Its taste is mild, and a little smoky. Although it is associated with cauliflower and broccoli, it does not have a head.
Instead, it has smooth and broad leaves which have a deep blue-green color. It is different from kale because of the frills around its leaves. You can buy this all throughout the year; however, the best variety grow between January to April.

Collard greens have a lot of benefits, and one of these providing the body with calcium. You will hear a lot of people say that this mineral is good for keeping the bones strong. However, this is not the only function which this certain nutrient is effective for. Lately, studies have shown that this also helps keep your colon cells protected from chemicals that cause cancer. When you want to alleviate pre-menstrual symptoms, you can just opt for food sources which contain calcium. Or else, you can drink a glass of milk each time you go to sleep.

On the other hand, you can lessen menopause symptoms with this mineral. One of these symptoms might be bone loss. When you constantly suffer from migraines, it is advisable that you take in supplements or consume foods which are rich in calcium phosphate. This mineral nutrient also helps with normal blood clotting, muscle contraction, enzyme activity regulation, nerve conduction, and better functions of the cell membrane.

Through collard greens, you will be aided with better immune system optimizing. This is because the vegetable contains essential nutrients which are needed for the performance of your body's defense system. These nutrients are zinc and vitamin A. The latter enhances the tissues of your mucus and epithelium, which are first in line when it comes to protecting your body from the invasion of harmful toxins and bacteria. When you lack this vitamin, your skin will turn dry and stiff, making you prone to infections and allergies.

This veggie is also a good source of the vitamin B complex which helps with cardiovascular protection. Since these complex vitamins are antioxidants, they get rid of the free radicals which are inside your body. In turn, you will be able to keep your heart from conditions that might affect its normal functions.

The nutrients of this vegetable also have cleansing ability. This is mostly seen in phytonutrients that help with the detoxification of harmful toxins. When your colon is cleansed from harmful chemicals, you will be able to stay healthy and fit.

You will be able to determine the freshness of the vegetable when the leaves are deep green in color. You should avoid those which already have yellow leaves, since this is an indication that it will wilt anytime soon. You might also want to opt for a variety which has small leaves. This one is softer with a milder taste.
Submitted on September 4, 2008