The health benefits of cabbage are in the high amounts of vitamin C,
beta carotene, and fiber it provides. Belonging to the same cruciferous
family as broccoli, cauliflower, and radish, cabbage is one of the
oldest cultivated vegetables, and has been popular for its taste as
well as medicinal properties. The ancient Romans used cabbage to treat
bruises and wounds and colic, while others used it to treat poisoning,
dog bites. Cabbage was also used in acne treatment.
Cabbage comes in hundreds of varieties (over 400), and in various
shades of green, purple, and red. The most popular varieties in the US
are the green cabbage and bok choy, while in India, it's the green one.
While each variety offers slightly different levels of nutrients, they
all provide a high level of vitamin C and phytonutrients.
As mentioned, cabbage is rich in vitamin C, an important antioxidant
that helps fight various bacterial and viral infections such as the common
cold, ear infections, and bronchitis. It also supports the
immune system and plays a critical role in preventing osteoporosis
reducing menopausal bone-loss. Red cabbage has more calcium and less of
the other minerals than green or white cabbage.
Cabbage is also high in potassium which helps control high
Cabbage contains significant amounts of sulphur, histidine,
chlorine, phosphorus, and sodium. Sulphur and histidine can strengthen
the immune system and reduce the growth of tumors.
Cabbage is extremely low in calories (1 cup has 39 calories), and as
such often used in weight-loss treatments, such as the cabbage-soup
diet. This diet is designed around heavy consumption of a low-calorie
cabbage soup over a week for short-term weight loss.
Cabbage is an excellent home remedy for obesity for another reason - it
contains a chemical called tartaric
acid which inhibits the conversion
of sugars and other carbohydrates into fat. A simple but effective
remedy for weight-loss would be to substitute meals with cabbage salads.
Raw cabbage juice is considered to be very effective in curing
constipation. Studies show that drinking a lot of cabbage
can also help heal ulcers. Cabbage contains the amino acid L-glutamine,
which protects the stomach lining.
Recent studies have shown that cabbage also lowers the
risk of many types of cancer,
such as prostate, colo-rectal, breast, lung, bladder, and ovarian
cancer. Cabbage also
reduces cholesterol and promotes heart health.
Many dislike cabbage because of the sulphurous odour it releases during
the cooking process. The isothiocynates that cabbage contains break
down into smelly sulphur compounds during cooking. Aluminum pans seem
increase this. Also, the longer you cook cabbage, the smellier it
becomes. Hence, cook cabbage in stainless steel utensils and only until
it's just tender. Or better still, eat it raw.
Cabbage is notorious for the bloating and gas it produces. Bacteria
that live naturally in the intestinal tract degrade the dietary fiber
in cabbage, and in the process, produce gas. To help deal with this,
products such as Beano before eating cabbage.
The health benefits of cabbage far outweigh these negative aspects; it
should therefore be part of a healthy diet.
http://urbanext.illinois.edu The Complete Book of
Nutritional Healing (Deborah Mitchell) Natural Home Remedies for
Common Ailments (H. K. Bakhru)