The superfood Bok Choy is a new craze in the list of superfoods and this nutritional powerhouse needs to be explored as its health benefits are exotic. Also known as the Chinese cabbage, this juicy leafy vegetable belonging to the cruciferous family can protect us from many impending dangerous diseases. Come on, readers, let us get to know more about this superfood which is spinach’s close competitor.
Though resembling celery a lot, it belongs to the cabbage family. For over 5000 years this vegetable was being cultivated by the Chinese and has an Asian origin.
Also spelled as Pak Choi, the name of the vegetable literally means “soup spoon” as its leaves resemble a soup spoon and it falls into the Chinensis category of the Chinese cabbage.
Want to know the nutritional value of this amazing leafy vegetable? Well, it is an excellent source of vitamins C, A, and K. Also, it has high potassium, foliate and manganese content. It also provides numerous flavonoids and antioxidant phenolic acids which help the body to put up a fight against various menacing diseases.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), National Nutrient Database, 1 cup of raw bok choy, weighing 70 grams (g) contains:
_ 9 calories
_ 1.05 g of protein
_ 1.53 g of carbohydrates
_ 0.7 g of dietary fiber
_ 0 g of cholesterol
_ 0.067 g of polyunsaturated fat
_ 74 mg of calcium
_ 0.56 mg of iron
_ 13 mg of magnesium
_ 26 mg of phosphorus
_ 176 mg of potassium
_ 46 mg of sodium
_ 0.13 mg of zinc
_ 31.5 mg of vitamin C
_ 46 micrograms (mcg) of foliate
_ 156 mcg of vitamin A (RAE)
_ 31.9 mcg of vitamin K
Treatment of breast cancer:
A research conducted by the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center and the Shanghai Center for Disease Control and Prevention has asserted that bok choy can play a huge role in the treatment of breast cancer. Thanks to the phytochemical DIM in this leafy vegetable. It arrests the cell division of the cancerous breast cells thus reducing the risks and impact of cancer.
Smooth shiny skin: BokChoy is a good source of vitamin C that helps in maintaining supple, healthy skin. Vitamin C aids in protecting our skin from damage caused by pollution and the sun. Also, it assists collagen in improving the skin texture and in the reduction in the formation of wrinkles.
Rectification of eye defects: Your eyes are in the safe hands of BokChoy as it protects them from many defects like night- blindness and cataract according to a study done by the Macular Degeneration Association. This can be attributed to the fact that beta-carotene and vitamin A found in plenty in the vegetable.
Reduces inflammation: The phytonutrients and the nutrients like omega-3 and vitamin K present in Bok Choy help to fight against inflammation. The rich source of antioxidants in this vegetable also goes a long way in protecting the body from chronic and unwanted inflammatory responses.
Aids in weight loss: As Bokchoy is low in calories so it is an excellent option to include in one’s diet. The fiber content and a large amount of water present in this vegetable can make us feel full and can put a full stop to hunger cravings thus aiding in weight-loss to a great extent.
Selection and storage
While purchasing this vegetable care should be taken that the greens with fresh, white, plump and firm stalks are chosen. Leaves that are fresh and green are always better.
While storing in the refrigerator, place the unwashed Bokchoy in a sealed container for not more than a couple of days. It is always advisable to cook this leafy miracle, as early as possible to enjoy its nutritional benefits to the fullest.
Availability: West Bengal is supposed to be the largest producer of this cabbage with Karnataka and Delhi not left far behind. The East Asian countries, especially Singapore consumeBokChoy the most.
Side-effect: A word of caution. Though BokChoy is fortified with many minerals and vitamins the story does not end there. It contains glycosinolates which when consumed in large amounts may lead to serious consequences like myxedema coma.
A simple recipe with BokChoy:
BokChoy, when cooked with mushrooms can be really yummy. Heat oil in a pan. Then add one sliced onion, chili flakes, and four crushed garlic pods. Add the sliced BokChoy stem when the onions are well cooked and keep stirring for a couple of minutes with a little salt added to it. This can be followed by adding mushroom, BokChoy leaves, and coconut milk. You can keep sauteing till the leaves give a wilted appearance. A yummy Chinese cabbage dish ready in minutes.
When had incorrect quantities there is nothing that can beat in nutrition with BokChoy! Bon Appetit!