Turnip greens are a member of the illustrious crucifer family, a group of vegetables famous for their health benefits and yet they simply do not get as much attention as other crucifers like broccoli, cauliflower or kale. These vegetables are well-known for being nutrient-rich and helpful in the treatment of many chronic conditions. Turnip greens, however, often are not included in the conversation about these benefits.
This is unfortunate, because these dark, leafy greens considered to be one of the hallmarks of Southern American cuisine are a nutritional powerhouse and because of this, they bring with them a wealth of amazing health benefits. Read on to find out more about one of the healthiest – but least known – members of the crucifer family.
A Wealth of Nutrients
Like other crucifers, turnip greens are low in calories but are nonetheless positively packed with nutrients. A single serving of turnip greens will bring in a mere 29 calories, but will nonetheless also provide a whopping 660% of the Vitamin K that the body requires for the day, along with 220% of Vitamin A and 66% of Vitamin C. It also provides impressive amounts of iron, calcium, folate and dietary fiber, also needed by the body for health. The nutrients are what are responsible for the amazing health benefits listed below.
Because it is so high in iron along with Vitamin C, which causes the iron to be more easily absorbed by the body this is a great choice for those who want to treat or prevent iron-deficiency anemia. It is particularly good for vegetarians, since there are not as many options for plant-based iron sources.
Reduction in Risk for Osteoporosis
Osteoporosis or the thinning of the bones as people age can put older people at a serious risk for fractures and which can sometimes lead to serious consequences like placement in a nursing home. One of the best ways to reduce the risk of developing this disease is to have a diet which is rich in calcium. Turnips greens are a great source of calcium to help prevent this condition.
Lowered Chances of Cancer Development
Turnip greens, like all cruciferous vegetables, are rich sources of sulfur-containing compounds. These compounds have been shown, in multiple clinical studies, to have anti-carcinogenic properties and will reduce the risk of the development or growth of cancer cells from various forms of this very serious disease.
These are all great reasons for getting to know one of the least publicized members of the crucifer family. From the prevention of many serious conditions to the providing of vital nutrients, turnip greens fit well into virtually any diet and their health benefits make them well worth adding to the bill of fare.