Kale Fun Facts
Lacinato Kale is also known as Dinosaur or Tuscan Kale. The beautiful leaves of the kale plant provide an earthy flavor and more nutritional value for fewer calories than almost any other food around. Lacinato kale has dark blue-green leaves, with an embossed texture with a slightly sweeter and more delicate flavor than curly kale. Kale provides valuable cardiovascular support in terms of its cholesterol-lowering ability. The isothiocyanates (ITCs) made from kale’s glucosinolates have been shown to help regulate detox activities in our cells which is shown to lower cancer risk. Researchers have also identified over 45 different flavonoids in kale that gives kale a leading dietary role with respect to avoidance of chronic inflammation and oxidative stress.
Green Curly Kale
Kale has one of the highest levels of antioxidants of any vegetable, and until the end of the Middle Ages, kale was one of the most common green vegetables in all of Europe. Curly kale has ruffled leaves and a fibrous stalk and is usually deep green in color. It has a lively pungent flavor with delicious bitter peppery qualities. Kale’s nutrient richness stands out in three particular areas: (1) antioxidant nutrients, (2) anti-inflammatory nutrients, and (3) anti-cancer nutrients in the form of glucosinolates. Look for kale with firm, deeply colored leaves and moist hardy stems.
Kale is super high in vitamins K, A, and C and has one of the highest levels of total carotenes. It’s especially high in lutein and zeaxanthin, which prevent macular degeneration (vision loss in old age). As a member of the cabbage family, it’s loaded with anti-cancer phytochemicals. There is also plenty of chlorophyll, mancanese, calcium, b-vitamins, and fiber. Unlike other members of the brassica family, such as Lacinato Kale and Mustard Greens, Red Kale’s flavor is more sweet than bitter, and its leaves are tenderer. Red Kale has frilly oak shaped leaves that are greenish purple in color with red veins. Red kale can be eaten raw in salads or it can be steamed, boiled, or sautéed.