Good Gut Kale Salad

Why is Kale extraordinary for our gut?


Kale has made its big debut the last few years as a very “trendy” superfood. Kale is a type of cruciferous vegetable, specifically a part of the brassica oleracea family; cabbage, cauliflower, collard greens, and brussel sprouts are other common members of this family. Kale can be eaten in several ways: it can be blended into smoothies, sautéed with vegetables, massaged with oil for a salad, put in any type of food, and baked for delicious kale chips!


Kale is a leafy green vegetable that is highly nutritious and contains many vitamins. It is an excellent source of vitamin K, Vitamin C, Vitamin A, carotenoids, vitamin B6, folate, fiber, and even minerals such as manganese. It is also full of fiber, which not only helps you feel satisfied longer and aids in better digestion; it also provides beneficial sugars (or prebiotics) that helps fuel growth of healthy gut bacteria. Eating plenty of fiber and leafy greens is ideal for healthy gut microbiomes! Better yet, this vegetable is extremely easy to grow and inexpensive!


Not only is kale super nutrient-dense with vitamins and minerals, it also has sulfur-containing compounds that provide many #GoodGut benefits; these compounds (called glucosinolates) become isothiocyanates when broken down, and they are currently being researched for their potential reduction of diseases such as colon cancer. One study even found that these compounds slowed the growth of tumor cells, and even helped decrease inflammation in the body! Talk about #GoodGut trendy food… the benefits of kale and many other cruciferous veggies make it a worthwhile addition to your diet!


Ways to eat it


You can enjoy it in a salad, smoothie, sautéed, baked, on your favorite sandwiches!

Married to Health has a fantastic Kale Salad Recipe. Try it out here!


Recipe: Kale Salad


Ingredients (Makes 4 Servings):

For the salad:

  • 1 pound kale

  • 1 cup romaine lettuce

  • 1 cup arugula

  • 1 cup spinach

  • 1 cup red leaf lettuce

  • 1/2 cup broccoli, chopped

  • 1 medium/ large carrot

  • 1 cup/ 1 12 oz. can heart of palm

For the Garnish:

  • 3/4 cup chickpeas, roasted

  • 1/4 cup almond parmesan (a blend of 1/2 cup raw almonds, 2 Tbsp nutritional yeast, 1/2 tsp himalayan salt, and 1 tsp garlic powder)

  • 3 Tbsp hemp seeds

For the Dressing:

  • 1 medium avocado

  • 3/4 cup cashews (if you do not have any pre-soaked, boil them for 30 minutes on low heat), soaked

  • 1 1/4 cup filtered water

  • 2 Tbsp kelp flakes

  • 2 tsp dijon mustard

  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast

  • 1 1/2 Tbsp vegan worcestershire sauce

  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder

  • 1 small clove garlic

  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice

  • 1 Tbsp ground olives or capers

  • 1/2 tsp Himalayan salt (add more to taste)

Directions:

  1. In a medium bowl, massage the washed kale with avocado for 2 minutes, or until softened.

  2. Add in spinach, romaine, red leaf lettuce, & arugula!

  3. Chop broccoli and hearts of palm.

  4. With a peeler or grater, make carrot ribbons or shreds.

  5. Blend dressing ingredients in a blender.

  6. Add all ingredients to the greens bowl & add dressing. Garnish with roasted chickpeas, hemp seeds, & almond parmesan, and enjoy!

Heal With Each Meal!


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References

Gunnars, K. (2018).10 health benefits of kale. Healthline.

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/10-proven-benefits-of-kale.

Krocks In The Kitchen. (2019). Whole foods garlicky kale salad.

https://krocksinthekitchen.com/2019/11/20/recipe-whole-foods-garlicky-kale-salad

-vegan-oil-free-plant-based/.

Lee, L. (n.d). 5 foods to improve your digestion. John Hopkins Medicine.

https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/wellness-and-prevention/5-foods-to-impr

ove-your-digestion#:~:text=Leafy%20greens%2C%20such%20as%20spinach,gr

owth%20of%20healthy%20gut%20bacteria.

Migliozzi, M., Thavarajah, D., Thavarajah, P., Smith, P. (2015). Lentil and kale:

complementary nutrient rich whole food sources to combat micronutrient and

calorie malnutrition. Nutrients.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4663599/.

VeggieChick. (2019). Simple kale quinoa. Veggie Chick.

https://veggiechick.com/kale-quinoa/.

Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. (n.d.). The nutrition source. Harvard School

of Public Health,

https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/food-features/kale/.

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