Who doesn’t know about cabbage? Yes, cabbage is round leafy vegetable that commonly use by people around the world. Cabbages come in various colour, green, purple and red. Red cabbage is less popular than the green one but it has rich nutrients and more benefits rather than the green cabbage. The red cabbage is belong to Brassicacea family, same with their realtives such as broccoli, collards, cauliflower and Brussel sprouts.
Red cabbage (Brassica oleracea L. var. capitata f. rubra) is native plant to the Southern part of Europe and it is grown in most European country nowadays.
Red cabbage can grow whole year but it has best taste when planted on cooler climates. When red cabbage planted during fall or winter it will have crunchy, mild and peppery-sweet leave flavor.
History of Red cabbage
Red cabbage is usually eaten raw in coleslaw or salad. It is also popular as ingredients of sauerkraut ( cabbage pickled). It has been used by European people since long ago. The Dutch sailors always bring sauerkraut with them during their long voyages to prevent scurvy ( disease occur due to lack of Vitamin C ). Russians have their own way to enjoy cabbage.
They usually put fermented cabbage into soup and enjoy it during winter from 14th to 19th centuries. The Greeks and Romans residents used to wrap the wound with cabbage to reduce inflammation. They believed that cabbage contains properties that can relieve inflammation and fasten the wound healing.
Red cabbage contains lots of vitamins, minerals and phyto-chemicals and it consider as super food. Unlike other cruciferous plant, red cabbage is more unique since it provides a big quantity of anthocyanins. Anthocyanins is qualify not only as antioxidant nutrients, but also as anti-inflammatory nutrients. It is rich in Vitamin K, Vitamin C and Vitamin B complex. Red cabbage also an excelent source of minerals such as manganese, iron, magnesium, and potassium. To know better about red cabbage check the table below :
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Health Benefits of Red Cabbage are very important since it could be first source of multiple vitamins. Red cabbage is great source of nutrients and it provides many benefits to the body. Here are some benefits of red cabbage that you can gain by consuming red cabbage regularly :
1. Promote healthy digestion
Red cabbage provides dietary fiber which significantly promotes the digestion tract function. Fiber add bulk to the stool and make it easier to absorb by the intestine. If you want to have healthy digestion, consuming red cabbage can be a good option.
2. Prevent constipation
Constipation is common problem that occur due to disturbance of large intestine function. Constipation usually happen when your diet lack of fiber. Red cabbage contains high level of dietary fiber that not only promotes healthy digestion but also help the stool to pass large intestine or colon easier and relieve constipation.
3. Improve immune system
Nothing more fascinating rather that getting this benefits. Just like other type of plant, red cabbage contains high level of antioxidant especially anthocyanin and rich in vitamin C that are well known as immune system booster. Consuming red cabbage will help your immune system function especially to fight disease.
4. Prevent scurvy
Have you ever heard that people who used to sail in long voyage or sailors often suffer from scurvy? Yet scurvy is an oral disease which occur due to lack of Vitamin C. Red cabbage contains high level of Vitamin C, and even higher than green cabbage. Making sauerkraut from red cabbage will be a solution to get the benefits of vitamin C, but it doesn’t mean that red cabbage can’t be enjoyed in different way.
5. Maintain healthy skin
Some people in France, especially women have their own beauty treatment. They used ground cabbage to maintain their skin beauty by applying it as face mask. The pigment anthocyanins and other vitamins in red cabbage can be useful to maintain beauty skin. It prevent the effect of free radicals and promote new skin cell formation.
6. Fight cancer
No wonder if red cabbage categorized as super food. Red cabbage is fantastic source of antioxidant especially anthocyanins. According to study, anthocyanins which contained in red cabbage can fight free radicals effect to the body and prevent oxidation stress.
Oxidation stress can cause DNA damage and begin the growth of cancer cells. Red cabbage also contains glucosinolates which can inhibit cancer cells growth in the body. According to a study which publish in the Journal of Horticulture, Forestry and Biotechnology cred cabbage regularly, can simply protect your body from certain types of cancer such as breast, intestine and colorectal cancer.
7. Treat skin disorder
The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties which presence in red cabbage can be an effective treatment for skin disorder such as eczema. This benefits is also supported by the presence of sulfur in red cabbage. Sulfur is mineral which is well known as ingredients of many skin medication.
8. Prevent heart disease
Red cabbage is good choice for maintain healthy heart. It contains some amount of potassium which play important role in keeping normal heart beat. Fiber and the antioxidant in red cabbage also can reduce the number of bad fat or Low Density Lipoprotein (LDL) in the blood which can increase the risk of heart disease.
9. Relieve upset stomach
If you feel uncomfortable and don’t wanna eat anything, try to eat red cabbage. It give good feeling to your stomach and can reduce nausea after you consume it. Just mix it with other ingredients as salad or just eat it as side dish while you eat other meal.
10. Treat ulcer
Anti-inflammatory properties in red cabbage can treat stomach ulcer and fasten its healing process. It protect stomach lining from stomach acid which can make the ulcer worst. Consuming red cabbage in some amount during the day will make your stomach feel better.
11. Maintain healthy brain
Brain is one of the most important organ in the body. Brain damage or any problem that occur in the brain can be so serious. Red cabbage contains some minerals such as magnesium and manganese which contributes in the brain cell protection and maintain healthy nerve function. Consuming red cabbage regularly can also keep the body from having magnesium deficiency which lead to several nerve problem.
12. Prevent eye disorder
Red Cabbage Health Benefits also best for prevent eye disorder. If you want to have bright eye and stay away from any eyes disorder, just include the red cabbage into your meal. Red cabbage contains high anthocyanins and vitamins that protect the eyes from damage and improve vision. According to study, people who consume red cabbage regularly have better vision compared to them who consume lack of vegetables and fruit in their diet.
13. Increase metabolism
Vitamin B complex are the co-factor of some metabolic enzyme and they keep the normal metabolism occur inside the cells. The absence of these vitamins will give bad effect to whole body. Metabolism is the main process of energy production and you can imagine what will happen if we don’t have enough energy to do our activities. Red cabbage certainly provides us with its abundant amount of vitamin B complex.
14. Slower aging process
Everyone wanna stay young but sometimes some people are just to lazy to care about their lifestyle especially their meal. Lack of vegetable and fruits making a bad diet and will make you grow old. The antioxidant and vitamin contained in most vegetable including red cabbage have ability to slower aging process and will keep your body stay young.
15. Purify the blood
Sulfur has ability to detox or purify the blood from toxic or harmful substance. It also enhance liver function to get rid of those harmful toxin. Try to consume red cabbage daily and feel the difference when your body get detoxified. You will feel better and lighter body also clearer mind.
16. Reduce the symptoms of arthritis
Arthritis or known as rheumatoid arthritis is disorder which is the symptoms of autoimmune disease. People who suffer arthritis will always feel pain on the joint and they need regular medication. Red cabbage contains high anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce inflammation in joint and reduce the pain. It is a good news for arthritis patient.
17. Help in weight lost
Eating a bunch of red cabbage will surely make you fell full, but you don’t need to worry since it has very low calories and will not increase your weight. The fiber content in red cabbage also bind the fat and prevent the absorption of fat inside the body. If you are on diet and wanna have slimmer waist, you can try to consume it for sure.
18. Reduce infection
By improving immune system function, red cabbage also can help to reduce infection. Red cabbage contains some amount of Glucosinolates that can protect the tissue and organ from infection especially which is caused by microorganism.
19. Fasten wound healing
The Greeks and Romans believed that cabbage can be used to treat external wound. Just wrap the cabbage on the wound and it will heal faster. This benefits is true since red cabbage contains anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce inflammation on wound and also antioxidant that promotes the regeneration of skin.
20. Keeping normal cholesterol level
Fiber can not only promotes healthy digestion but it also reduce cholesterol level within the blood. Fiber can block the cholesterol from entering blood vessel or arteries wall and prevent from arteries thickening or atherosclerosis. So, by consuming red cabbage regularly, you give better protection to your cardiovascular system
21. Lower blood pressure
Red cabbage contains some amounts of potassium that can help to maintain normal blood pressure. As we know that hypertension is one of serious health problem that suffered by most people nowadays and people who suffer from hypertension must choose their food well. Red cabbage is not only delicious but it can be a great snack and food for hypertension patient.
22. Promotes shiny hair
The sulfur content in red cabbage can purify the blood and it enhance the nutrient absorption by the hair roots. Consuming red cabbage regularly can give awesome aid to your hair by make it shiny and glossy.
23. Prevent anemia
Red cabbage is good source of iron that can prevent the body from anemia. Anemia is a condition when the body lack of red blood cells and oxygen transport which resulting in weak body and low stamina.
24. Strengthen bones
Calcium is important in maintaining bones strength, by consuming red cabbage you have provide your body with some amounts of calcium that can keep the bones mass and density also prevent from osteoporosis.
25. Relieve stress
Red cabbage contains magnesium which is best to cure depression and stress. Magnesium play important role in the nerve function and trigger the brain to release several neurotransmitter which give calming effect and reduce depression.
26. Cure headache
Drinking red cabbage smoothie is believed can reduce and cure headache. Just mix some red cabbage with some blueberry, frozen banana, milk or yogurt then blend it as smoothies. Drink it before you go to bed and feel the benefits. The magnesium and other nutrients content in red cabbage smoothies can calm the nerve in brain and reduce pain sensation within the head.
27. Maintain healthy nails
Red cabbage can be called as beauty foods since it give lots of wonderful benefits for skin, hair and even nails. Yellow or broken nails is a sign that your body may experience lack of magnesium. Consuming red cabbage regularly can help to maintain your nail and make it more beautiful. The sulfur content of red cabbage also contributes in keeping your beauty nails.
Health Risk of Red Cabbage
Even red cabbage provided us with abundant nutrients, it not recommended to consume it excessively. Excessive consumption of red cabbage can cause several problem such as flatulence ( just like other type of cruciferous plant, they produce more gas in stomach ), Hypothyroidism (thyroid gland disorder), and diarrhea.
Person who are under medication of blood thinner has to avoid red cabbage consumption because it contains high amount of Vitamin K that can cause blot clotting.
How to Purchase, Store and Consume
Before you go to market to purchase some red cabbage and consume it, itis better if you following these tips :
- Choose only red cabbage with fresh leaves and avoid to purchase moldy, broken leaves and damage red cabbage
- If you found some hole or spot on red cabbage it will not be matter. Organic red cabbage usually has this sign since it doesn’t use any pesticide for cultivating the plants
- When you reach home remove any wilted or insect damaged leaves on the outside
- Store the red cabbage inside a container or a plastic bag. It can be stored in fridge for some weeks.
- Red cabbage can also be pickled and frozen with certain handling techniques.
- Before using red cabbage don’t forget to ash your hands and cut the core of cabbage with knife
- Wash the red cabbage just and drain it well before use
- Don’t use same cutting board which is used to cut meat or poultry to cut the red cabbage because it can lead to cross contamination of bacteria. It is better to separate the red cabbage with raw meat, poultry or fish.
- You can simply add red cabbage into your salad, soup, stew or any other dish that you loves to enjoy.
Red cabbage is definitely super food that you can consume as daily meals. just consume it in right way and amount to gain the healthy benefits.