Kohlrabi is a vegetable that is a member of the cabbage family. It’s a distinctive looking vegetable, with a ball-like bulb, the edible part of the plant, but it is not as rich in nutrients as the leaves. Some people say it has a taste similar to broccoli stems only sweeter. Kohlrabi should be harvested before it reaches full maturity; otherwise, it becomes woody. This vegetable is a healthy addition to a raw salad or steamed or roasted to create a side dish.
Kohlrabi Varieties: There are two varieties of kohlrabi, the green and purple. The coloring should be light for the green one and deep for the purple one. The greens for both varieties should be crisp and firm.
Kohlrabi Health Benefits:
- High in bioflavonoids, plant pigments that work with vitamin C and other antioxidant to prevent the cell damage that promotes cancer.
- High in indoles, chemicals that reduces the effects of estrogen, and thus may reduce the risk of breast cancer and other estrogen stimulated cancer .
- Helps stabilize blood sugar imbalances and is beneficial for hypoglycemia and diabetes.
- Reduces swelling of the scrotum.
- Good source of vitamin C; a 1/2 – cup serving provides 50% of the adult RDA. This vitamin is essential for maintaining healthy skin, connective tissue, and a strong immune system.
- Good source of potassium. Potassium is important for proper functioning of every cell in the body and is critical for muscle contractions and controlling the heartbeat. Studies have shown that a potassium rich diet can also reduce blood pressure in those who are hypertensive.
- High in dietary fiber. A serving of kohlrabi provides five grams of soluble fiber – the kind that’s important for heart health.
- Low in calories and fat, with only 36 calories in a cup of raw kohlrabi, it’s a food you can enjoy without regret. Its little fat content is needed to absorb the fat soluble vitamins.
Kohlrabi Nutrition Facts: per 1 cup (140g) raw Kohlrabi
- Vitamin C: 84mg
- Potassium: 472mg
- Carbohydrates: 8.4g
- Protein: 2.3g
- Fiber: 4.9g
- Calories: 36
Buying and Storing tips: Kohlrabi can grow up to 40 pounds; they’re sweetest when smaller, about the size of a tennis ball. Large kohlrabi tends to be woody. Choose firm, heavy kohlrabi with deep green leaves, avoiding any with browning or yellowing leaves.
Store kohlrabi in a refrigerator, wrapped in plastic, it can last for up to four days.
Preparation tips: Wash kohlrabi just before using. Peel it, cut it in 1/4-inch (0.6cm) slices, and sauté in butter or olive oil, or boil. To prepare the leaves, wash them; remove the middle stems, and sauté like spinach.
Kohlrabi Side Effects: People who get gas after eating other cruciferous vegetables may have the same response to kohlrabi.