Collards: Disease-fighting Superfood

 

Just a few reasons to consider Collard Greens!

  • Contribute to blood-clotting, and may help maintain a healthy cardiovascular system – due to high levels of Vitamin K.
  • Great for bone health, as they provide a good source of non-dairy calcium.
  • Help protect against cancer, cataracts and heart disease through the antioxidant beta-carotene.
  • Folate (a B vitamin) content can help prevent birth defects and anemia, and assist cell growth and function.
  • Shown to lead to lower cholesterol levels.
  • Digestive health may benefit from the fiber content of Collards – which also aids in fighting against Helicobacter pylori.
  • Contains the phytonutrients lutein, lipoic acid, glucobrassicin, glucoraphanin, gluconasturtiian, glucotropaeolin, caffeic acid, ferulic acid, quercetin, and kaempferol.

 

Nutrient Profile – Macronutrients:

 

Nutrient Profile – Micronutrients:

 

Collard Greens growing in a California field:

 

How to prepare and cook Collards:

  • Collards are in season between January and April, but can also likely be found year-round in supermarkets.
  • Choose leaves that are dark green, and avoid limp and yellowish leaves.  Smaller leaves are better.
  • To keep fresh before cooking, store unwashed leaves in refrigerator’s crisper drawer.
  • Rinse thoroughly before cooking.

Several links for recipe options may be found here: http://www.marthastewart.com/286291/collard-greens-recipes/@center/1009854/winter-produce#258351

 

Another great recipe I found (for Stuffed Collards Greens) at the New York Times website. (See link below)

 

Sources:

1st image credit:  https://www.pittsburghfoodbank.org/blog/collards/

Health benefits info: http://www.healwithfood.org/superfoods/collard-greens-health-benefits.php

http://www.livestrong.com/article/273801-benefits-of-juicing-collard-greens/

http://www.fullcircle.com/goodfoodlife/2012/05/24/everything-you-need-to-know-about-collard-greens/

http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=138

http://health.howstuffworks.com/wellness/food-nutrition/natural-foods/natural-weight-loss-food-collard-greens-ga.htm

Nutrient profile: http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/vegetables-and-vegetable-products/2410/2

2nd image credit: http://www.kenrockwell.com/trips/2009-06-monterey/

3rd image credit: http://www.marthastewart.com/286291/collard-greens-recipes/@center/1009854/winter-produce#196548

4th image credit:  http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/01/health/nutrition/01recipehealth.html?_r=0

 

 

 

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