Is kale the new wonder food? We all know the enormous health benefits of eating kale: unusually high in fiber; an excellent source of nutrients, especially vitamin A and calcium and rich in beta-carotene and carotenoid lutein (which helps prevent damage to the eyes).
According to the Vision Council of America, now it may help to save one’s vision. Kale is one of the five essential foods named by the Council to help maintain a healthy life as it contains protein, which can decrease the risk for eye diseases such as Age-related Macular Degeneration.
The four other essential foods are:
Butternut Squash: contains Vitamin A, which is needed by the retina in the form of light-absorbing retinal molecule and keeps eyes, skin and mucous membranes moist.
Zucchini: contains lutein, used as an antioxidant and for blue light absorption.
Brussels sprouts: contains Vitamin C, an antioxidant that reduces the risk of cataract and macular degeneration.
Blueberries: contains Vitamin C, which protects the body from free radicals that can damage the eyes and cause disease, as well as decrease the potential for developing glaucoma.
Just one cup of raw kale contains 15 percent of the recommended daily value of calcium and vitamin B6; 40 percent of magnesium; 180 percent of vitamin A; 200 percent of vitamin C and an astounding 1020 percent of vitamin K. The boost in immune support and antioxidant protection provided by these vitamins could help ward off all colds and flus of the season and perhaps even more serious diseases.
Try this tasty recipe to have kale in your family’s daily diet as a snack:
- One bunch kale, shredded, ribs removed and leaves torn into bite size pieces.
- 1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ tsp. sea salt
- Position racks in upper third and center of oven; preheat to 400°F.
- If kale is wet, very thoroughly pat dry with a clean kitchen towel; transfer to a large bowl.
- Drizzle the kale with oil and sprinkle with salt. Using your hands, massage the oil and salt onto the kale leaves to evenly coat.
- Fill 2 large rimmed baking sheets with a layer of kale, making sure the leaves don’t overlap. (If the kale won’t all fit, make the chips in batches.)
- Bake until most leaves are crisp, switching the pans back to front and top to bottom halfway through, 8 to 12 minutes total. (If baking a batch on just one sheet, start checking after 8 minutes to prevent burning.)
Recipe adapted from Eatingwell.com