Cabbage is a vegetable often overlooked, but packed with vitamins and minerals. It belongs to the so-called cruciferous vegetables which also includes kale, broccoli, cauliflower and brussels sprouts. Cabbage comes in different shapes and colours like white, red and green.
Cabbage contains a great amount of vitamin C and vitamin K, and a moderate amount of vitamin B6 and folate (B9). Furthermore, cabbage is high in fibres and low in calories. While all cabbages have an excellent supply of vitamin C, the red version wins the race as it even contains more of this antioxidant than oranges.
Vitamin C boosts your immune system, can reduce blood pressure and the risk of heart disease, while it also helps with the absorption of iron. Additionally, vitamin C could be beneficial for your mental health, like helping with depression and anxiety.
Vitamin K is essential for blood clotting and therefore wound healing. This vitamin also helps decrease nerve damage and prevent neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's disease. It is also suggested that vitamin K has a positive effect on the health of your bones.
Cabbage is high in fibres which are beneficial for your digestion. Because of the high amount of insoluble fibres, cabbage is among the vegetables recommended to eat while being constipated. Insoluble fibres do not solve in water and therefore add bulk to your stool which can get things moving. The soluble fibres in cabbage help lower blood sugar as well as blood pressure.
There are different ways to prepare and eat cabbage. It can be pickled, fermented, steamed, sautéed, stir-fried, stewed or eaten raw. Why not make a coleslaw or use it as a topping for tacos or hamburgers? You can also incorporate this vegetable in pastas, rice dishes, casseroles, soups and other salads. A traditional way to eat cabbage in the Netherlands is as 'stamppot', which is a combination of mashed potatoes with cooked vegetables. Happy, healthy cooking!