An over due blog on Kale. Touted to be one of the world’s latest discovered “super foods”.
I have been caught up with the kale hype and have a veggie patch with loads of kale. It grows well, lasts for years and is reliably high in anti-oxidants, Vitamin C, beta carotene, Vitamin K and calcium. It’s anti cancer and anit-inflammatory properties are well documented so is there any bad dirt on this glowing vegetable?
Turns out there is.
Kale belongs to the brassica family, along with cabbage, brussel sprouts, broccoli, broccolini, collards, cauliflower and mustard greens.
These are the common kales: Russian with its purple tinge, curly and the most recognised Lacinato.
While Kale offers massive health benefits for most (and gets a BIG tick here) it can for some have negative effects. These include people with burn out and thyroid issues (and I would caution those with weight issues to go crazy on kale too). UNLESS it’s cooked.
You see eaten raw, or juiced, kale can slow your thyroid down with components called isothiocynates (also found in soy). What these do is interfer with TPO and disrupt the signalling across the thyroid cell membranes. Your thyroid governs your metabolism and when in normal range you generally don’t have weight issues, feel good, happy and warm. When your thyroid is underactive, you can gain weight, feel flat and depressed and notice the cold more. (There are many other symptoms and issues associated with an underactive thyroid but they are the big ones).
Kale is one food best cooked! When it is the isothyiocynates are broken down and reduces thy anti-thyroid effect. Cooking works on the enzyme myrosinase which produce the isothiocynates and cooking also decreases oxalic acid.
So how can one eat kale?
If you have a thyroid issues (and I would include burn out, and weight issues in here as often while, not diagnosed with an underactive thyroid, they will have one you are best to heat your kale.
Try steaming, baking, stir frying and using in soups.
For everyone else, kale is fine and a great super food!
Spread the word if you know someone who might be interested in reading this article as not many know of it’s negative effects.