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Benefits of Turnips
41. Antiinflammatory Benefits
As an excellent source of vitamin K and a good source of omega3 fatty acids (in the form of alphalinolenic acid, or ALA), turnip greens provide us with two hallmark antiinflammatory nutrients. Vitamin K acts as a direct regulator of our inflammatory response, and ALA is the building block for several of the bodys most widelyused families of antiinflammatory messaging molecules. While glucobrassicin (a glucosinolate found in many cruciferous vegetables, and the precursor for the antiinflammatory molecule indole3carbinol) does not appear to be present in turnip greens in significant amounts, other glucosinolates present in turnip greens may provide important antiinflammatory benefits and are the subject of current research.
42. Digestive Support
The fiber content of turnip greensover 5 grams in every cupmakes this cruciferous vegetable a natural choice for digestive system support. And although not yet confirmed in largescale human research studies, we eventually expect to see some special digestive benefits coming from turnip greens in the area of glucosinolates, isothiocyanates, and stomach bacteria. While glucoraphanin (a glucosinolate found in many cruciferous vegetables, and the precursor for sulforaphane, an isothiocyanate with important properties involving regulation of a stomach bacteria called Helicobacter pylori) does not appear to be present in turnip greens in significant amounts, other glucosinolates present in turnip greens may provide similar health benefits with respect to prevention of Helicobacter pylori overgrowth in our stomach or too much clinging by this bacterium to our stomach wall.
43. How to Select and Store
Turnip greens are usually available with their roots attached. Look for greens that are unblemished, crisp, and deep green in color. If you have purchased turnip greens with roots attached, remove them from the root. Store root and greens in separate plastic bags, removing as much of the air from the bags as possible. Place in refrigerator where the greens should keep fresh for about 4 days.
44. Turnip Greens as a Goitrogenic Food
Turnip Greens are are sometimes referred to as a goitrogenic food. Yet, contrary to popular belief, according to the latest studies, foods themselvesturnip greens includedare not goitrogenic in the sense of causing goiter whenever they are consumed, or even when they are consumed in excess. In fact, most foods that are commonly called goitrogenicsuch as the cruciferous vegetables (including turnip greens, broccoli, kale, and cauliflower) and soyfoodsdo not interfere with thyroid function in healthy persons even when they are consumed on a daily basis. Nor is it scientifically correct to say that foods contain goitrogens, at least not if you are thinking about goitrogens as a category of substances like proteins, carbohydrates, or vitamins. With respect to the health of our thyroid gland, all that can be contained in a food are nutrients that provide us with a variety of health benefits but which, under certain circumstances, can also interfere with thyroid function. The term goitrogenic food makes it sound as if something is wrong with the food, but that is simply not the case.
45. Nutritional Profile
Turnip greens are an excellent source of vitamin K, vitamin A (in the form of betacarotene), vitamin C, folate, copper, manganese, dietary fiber, calcium, vitamin E, and vitamin B6. They are a very good source of potassium, magnesium, pantothenic acid, vitamin B2, iron, and phosphorus. Additionally, they are a good source of vitamin B1, omega3 fatty acids, niacin, and protein.
46. InDepth Nutritional Profile
In addition to the nutrients highlighted in our ratings chart, an indepth nutritional profile for Turnip greens is also available. This profile includes information on a full array of nutrients, including carbohydrates, sugar, soluble and insoluble fiber, sodium, vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, amino acids and more.
47. Tips for Preparing Turnip Greens
Rinse turnip greens under cold running water. Chop greens into 1/2inch slices for quick and even cooking. To get the most health benefits from turnip greens, we recommend letting them sit for a minimum of 5 minutes before cooking. Sprinkling with lemon juice before letting them sit may be able to help activate their myrosinase enzymes and increase formation of beneficial isothiocyanates in the greens.
48. The Healthiest Way of Cooking Turnip Greens
We recommend Healthy Steaming turnip greens for maximum nutrition and flavor. Fill the bottom of a steamer pot with 2 inches of water. While waiting for the water to come to a rapid boil, chop greens. Steam for 5 minutes and toss with our Mediterranean Dressing, which includes 1 TBS lemon juice, 1 medium clove garlic (pressed or chopped), 3 TBS extra virgin olive oil salt, and black pepper to taste . Top with your favorite optional ingredients.
49. Individual Concerns
Turnip greens are among a small number of foods that contain measurable amounts of oxalates, naturally occurring substances found in plants, animals, and human beings. When oxalates become too concentrated in body fluids, they can crystallize and cause health problems. For this reason, individuals with already existing and untreated kidney or gallbladder problems may want to avoid eating turnip greens. Laboratory studies have shown that oxalates may also interfere with absorption of calcium from the body. Yet, in every peerreviewed research study weve seen, the ability of oxalates to lower calcium absorption is relatively small and definitely does not outweigh the ability of oxalatecontaining foods to contribute calcium to the meal plan. If your digestive tract is healthy, and you do a good job of chewing and relaxing while you enjoy your meals, you will get significant benefitsincluding absorption of calciumfrom calciumrich foods plant foods that also contain oxalic acid. Ordinarily, a healthcare practitioner would not discourage a person focused on ensuring that they are meeting their calcium requirements from eating these nutrientrich foods because of their oxalate content.
50. Vitamin K and omega3 fatty acids
Turnip greens are great sources of two excellent antiinflammatory agents: vitamin K and omega3 fatty acids. Vitamin K is a potent regulator of the bodys inflammatory response system. Research shows omega3 fatty acids are essential building blocks of the bodys inflammation system and help reduce the risk of heart disease, arthritis and other disease that may be the result of chronic inflammation.
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