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Calories in kale

Submitted by Nick on February 25, 2011

With frilly dark green leaves and a mild cabbage-like flavor, kale is a versatile vegetable that can be made into a soup or baked crisp in the oven as a delicious healthy snack. Calories in kale chips must be among the healthiest among all chips, so rich are kale leaves in nutrients. Related to collard greens, broccoli and Brussels sprouts, kale lends itself very well to soups, stir fries, salads and stews, adding its flavor to the dish. Calories in kale are not a concern because this low calorie green vegetable can be quite filling in salads and stews. The curly leaves and their dark blue-green color, add aesthetic appeal to a salad bowl.

Flowering kale, often sold as ornamental cabbage, in hues of red, lavender, pink, cream and white, add an edible ornamental touch to the table. Kale is part of the traditional food in various European countries such as Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Holland, and even in Ireland and Scotland.

A bunch of raw chopped kale has only about 35 calories, but this nutrient dense vegetable is packed with vitamins and minerals useful for the body. Calories in kale dishes may be high when they are cooked in an African style in coconut milk and served with rice or cooked cornmeal.  A bunch of kale leaves can provide the body with the vitamins A and K and the vitamin B complex it needs.

Kale is rich in beta-carotene and also has a number of minerals like copper, iron calcium, potassium and manganese. Flavenoids in kale have antioxidant properties and help fight free radicals.

Kale is also called borecole, and the juice of these leaves is a popular beverage in Japan. Sautéed, stewed, braised, or baked until crisp, kale leaves can be healthy addition to any meal.

Freezing kale leaves enhances their flavor and taste. Mashed potatoes and kale are served with sausages in Ireland at Halloween, when calories in cooked kale hardly make a difference. In Portugal, a traditional soup is prepared with chopped kale, potatoes, where sausage slices add to the calories in the kale soup.

Kale festivals and tours are popular in Germany, where boiled kale is consumed in large quantities with pork sausages and schnapps. Not only in Europe, kale is also used in traditional Brazilian cuisine too.  

The phytonutrients in kale help neutralize potential cancer causing substances. The abundance of vitamins A and C in kale make it excellent for the health of skin, eyes and teeth. Consuming kale regularly reduces the risk of anemia, osteoporosis, and age-related macular degeneration, thanks to the essential minerals like iron, calcium and phosphorus in the vegetable.
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