An artichoke is an interesting looking vegetable and is part of the thistle family. It has a very unique and distinct taste as well as a unique and distinct way to eat it by scraping the “meat” off of the leaves with your teeth. Artichokes make an interesting presentation for a meal or snack and present an immense amount of nutritional benefits as well. Here are the facts about the various ingredients in artichokes to understand how they healthy they really are.
One medium sized artichoke contains a staggeringly low 25 calories per the edible part of the plant. Of these calories, 0 are form fat, 2 are from protein and 6 are from carbs. The carbs are really low for those watching their intake but the extraordinary news is that only 1 is from sugar and the other 5 are from pure dietary fiber.
Fiber is one of the most essential things needed for a normal digestive system. Artichokes are high in fiber and can therefore aid in proper digestion, regulation of bowel function and even prevent colon cancer. Fiber does more than just provides a healthy gut. They slow digestion to make you feel fuller longer and this regulates blood sugar to keep levels evened out. Definitely add artichokes to your diet for the benefits of fiber.
Vitamin and Minerals
Artichokes are not just a supplier of vitamins and minerals…they are packed with them! The vitamin C aids in repairing body tissues from healing wounds to building bones. The folate (or Vitaimin B6) converts carbs into energy and causes the bone marrow to produce both white and red blood cells. The magnesium does a wide variety of things such as aiding the absorption of calcium into the bones, reduces the risk of diabetes, reduces anxiety and prevents heart issues. The potassium in artichokes is also very high which is good news if you want to repair and build muscle and control blood pressure. This touches on only some of the extraordinary benefits of the vitamins and minerals in artichokes and already they are abundant.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture, artichokes rank as the number one vegetable in ant-oxidant count. (credit) One of the biggest takeaways from scientific research of artichokes is that they can actually repair the damage done to the human liver. That’s right. Eating artichokes can aid in curing liver disease and even liver cancer. Outstanding! Some other benefits include preventing many forms of cancer including lung, breast, colon and even skin cancer. They also strengthen the immune system and regulate the body in ways that promote healthier bodies inside and out in many capacities. They are even said to cure hangovers!
Artichokes are absolutely added to the “Superfoods” category. It should be no surprise that artichokes are native to the Mediterranean region with the lowest rates of chronic disease and one of the highest life expediencies in the world. Adding artichokes to your diet is simple and inexpensive. Eat them raw with lemon and a little melted butter or olive oil. If the taste is too distinct for you, don’t forget that you can add it to some of your favorite dishes like sauces, soups and dips. They are popular on salads too.
Are artichokes healthy? You bet they are. And unquestionably one of the healthiest veggies of all.
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