Rutabaga is a vegetable. A close cousin of turnip, it is quite sweet and makes an awesome addition to various dishes. You can add them to whatever you want. Not only that, rutabaga also has many health benefits which affect your overall health. These include improving metabolic function, boosting immunity, acting as an antioxidant, preventing various forms of cancer and improving digestive health. Additionally, it helps with losing weight, building stronger bones, helping cellular and enzymatic functions and lowering cholestoral levels and blood pressure.
Rutabaga: What is It?
Rutabaga, as it is referred to in North America, is a cruciferous vegetable more popularly known as “swede”. Scientifically known as Brassica napus, it has even more names around the world, including ‘neeps’ or ‘yellow turnips’. This root vegetable is actually a cross between turnips and cabbages.
The origin of this vegetable is questioned even today. However, most people think it is native to the regions of Russia and Scandinavia. It was widely introduced in England in the 19th century, and there is evidence that the vegetable has also been harvested in the regions of North America since the 19th century.
Rutabaga as a common food source, with people using the root and its leaves, depending on the culture. Its leaves are similar to those of other leafy vegetables such as chard or spinach. The root can be prepared like potatoes – either roasted or mashed.
The unique flavor of rutabaga is what makes it perfect for boosting the taste of various dishes all over the world, and many cultures have incorporated the vegetable in some of their national delicacies or staple foods. In fact, some consider it a healthy alternative to potatoes. This is because rutabaga has the same amount of empty carbs but may also provide a lot of vitamins, minerals and organic compounds beneficial for your health.
Nutritional Value of Rutabaga
Rutabaga contains many nutrients, including high levels of phosphorus, potassium, manganese, zinc, iron, calcium and magnesium. It is also oozing with many vitamins, including vitamins K, E, C and vitamin B complex. When it comes to its organic compounds, rutabaga may help provide carotenoids and glucosinolates.
Furthermore, as previously stated, this amazing vegetable contains B vitamins, including B6, B9 (folate), B5 (pantothenic acid), B3 (niacin), B2 or (riboflavin) and B1 (thiamine). It also contains rich levels of dietary fiber and protein. Furthermore, it also containts high levels of fatty acids such as omega-6 and omega-3.
Health Benefits of Rutabaga
Here are some of the best health benefits of rutabaga:
Helps prevent diabetes. Rutabaga is beneficial in reducing the risk of diabetes, acting in the same way as potatoes to help prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes.
Helps boost metabolism. Rutabaga is beneficial in providing an almost complete boost of protein in the body. The protein, together with the amino acids present in the vegetable, promote proper development, healing, growth, muscle contraction, reproduction and many more bodily processes.
Helps lower blood pressure. The potassium content of rutabaga helps lower blood pressure by reducing the contraction and stress of blood vessels. This allows for easier passage of blood and lowers the chance of blood clotting.
Helps boost immunity. The vitamin C found rutabaga is essential for boosting the immune system. Furthermore, it also helps stimulate the system by producing collagen. The high levels of vitamin C may also help prevent colorectal cancer.
Other Important Benefits of Rutabaga
Helps improve digestion. like any other cruciferous vegetables, rutabaga is very high in fiber content. this essential nutrient is beneficial for the proper functioning of the digestion. Furthermore, it also helps in bulking up the stool, thus preventing constipation.
Helps prevent premature aging. Rutabaga is beneficial in preventing premature aging. Furthermore, it helps improve eyesight and stimulate healthy regeneration of cells all throughout your tissues and organs.
Helps prevent cancer. This is one of the most amazing and surprising health benefits of rutabaga. This is primarily because of the antioxidant properties of the vegetable, which help reduce the growth of cancerous tumors in the body. Moreover, there are also high level of carotenoids in it, which combat the effects of free radicals.