Despite the impressive nutrient content, white cabbage is often overlooked as a valuable food item and it’s benefits are overlooked.
White cabbage is a source of vitamins and minerals, and therefore is very good for health. The cabbage leaves resemble lettuce leaves, but from a botanical point of view, cabbage belongs to the cruciferous vegetable family, which includes broccoli, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts. Cabbage comes in a variety of shapes and colors, including red, purple, white, and green, and its leaves can be shriveled or smooth. White cabbage usually has a light green color.
Cabbage has been cultivated throughout the world for thousands of years to be used to prepare a variety of dishes. Cabbage kvass and pickled, respectively, receiving sauerkraut and kimchi.
The article will consider the proven information on the composition and nutritional value of white cabbage, the benefits and harms of its use for human health.
The benefits of white cabbage
1. White cabbage is rich in nutrients.
Although cabbage is a low-calorie product, it has an impressive nutrient profile.
100 gr. raw green cabbage contains:
Calories : 25 kcal
Protein : 1 gr.
Cellulose : 2.5 gr.
Vitamin K : 90%
Vitamin C : 60%
Folic acid : 12%
Potassium : 12%
Manganese : 8%
Vitamin B6 : 6%
Calcium : 4%
Magnesium : 3%
White cabbage also contains a small amount of other trace elements, including vitamin A, iron and riboflavin.
As you can see in the list above, cabbage is rich in vitamins B6 and B9 (folic acid), both of which are necessary for many important processes in the body, including energy metabolism and the normal functioning of the nervous system.
In addition, cabbage has a high fiber content and contains powerful antioxidants, including polyphenols and sulfur compounds.
Antioxidants protect the body from damage caused by free radicals. Free radicals are molecules with an odd number of electrons, which makes them unstable. When they become too much, they can damage the cells of the human body.
White cabbage is particularly rich in vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant that can protect against heart disease, certain types of cancer and loss of vision.
Cabbage is a low-calorie vegetable rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
2. It has anti-inflammatory properties.
Inflammation is not always bad for the body. In fact, the body creates a nidus of inflammation to protect against infection or speed up healing. Any acute inflammation is the normal response to trauma or infection.
On the other hand, chronic inflammation that occurs over a long period of time and is not treated can cause many diseases, including heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease.
Cruciferous vegetables, such as cabbage, contain many different antioxidants, which have been shown to reduce chronic inflammation.
Studies have shown that consuming large quantities of cruciferous vegetables reduces some markers of inflammation in the blood.
One Chinese study of more than 1000 women found that those who consumed the most cruciferous vegetables had significantly lower levels of inflammatory markers compared to those who very rarely had cabbage in their diets.
Sulforaphane, kaempferol and other antioxidants found in this remarkable group of plants are believed to cause this anti-inflammatory effect.
White cabbage contains powerful antioxidants that can help reduce inflammation.
3. White cabbage is rich in vitamin C
Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is a water-soluble vitamin that performs many important functions in the body.
For example, with the help of vitamin C, collagen is synthesized, the most abundant protein in the body. Collagen makes the skin firm and smooth and is crucial for the proper functioning of bones, muscles and blood vessels.
In addition, vitamin C helps the body absorb non-heme iron, a type of iron found in plant foods.
Vitamin C contained in cabbage is a powerful antioxidant that has been widely studied for its potential benefits in the fight against cancer. Vitamin C works to protect the body from damage caused by free radicals that cause many chronic diseases, including cancer.
Evidence suggests that eating foods rich in vitamin C reduces the risk of developing certain types of cancer.
Analysis of 21 studies showed that the risk of lung cancer decreased by 7% in the case of daily consumption of vitamin C in a dose of 100 mg from fruits and vegetables. However, this study may have some inaccuracies, because scientists could not determine whether the risk of developing cancer was reduced due to vitamin C or other compounds found in fruits and vegetables.
Although many observational studies have found a link between high vitamin C intake and a reduced risk of developing certain types of cancer, the results of controlled studies remain inconsistent.
Despite the fact that more research is needed to determine the role of this vitamin in cancer prevention, it is undoubted that vitamin C plays a key role in many important functions in the body.
Also note that red cabbage compared to white cabbage, contains 30% more vitamin C. 100 gr. Red cabbage completely covers the daily need for vitamin C, which is equivalent to eating a small orange.
The human body needs vitamin C to realize many important functions, and it is a powerful antioxidant. Red cabbage is especially rich in this nutrient, providing 100% of the daily rate per 100 grams.
4. White cabbage is good for digestion.
If you want to improve your digestion, then eating fiber-rich cabbage is an excellent solution.
This crisp vegetable is full of intestine-friendly insoluble fibers, such as carbohydrates, which cannot be broken down in the intestines. Insoluble fiber helps maintain a healthy digestive system, adding mass to the stool and promoting good perilstatics, that is, regular bowel movements.
Also, cabbage is rich in soluble fiber, which has been found to increase the number of beneficial bacteria in the intestine. This is due to the fact that fiber is the main source of food (i.e., pribiotic) for friendly species of bacteria, such as Bifidobacteria and Lactobacilli.
These bacteria perform important functions, such as protecting the immune system and producing essential nutrients, vitamins K2 and B12.
Eating a large amount of white cabbage in the diet is a great way to maintain a healthy and happy digestive system.
Cabbage contains insoluble fiber, which preserves the health of the digestive system, providing fuel for friendly bacteria and promoting regular bowel movement.
5. White cabbage will benefit heart health.
White cabbage contains more than 36 different types of powerful anthocyanins, which makes it an excellent choice for maintaining heart health.
But red cabbage is especially rich in antioxidants. It contains powerful compounds called anthocyanins. They give this delicious vegetable its bright purple color.
Anthocyanins are plant pigments belonging to the family of flavonoids. Many studies have found a link between eating foods rich in this pigment and reducing the risk of heart disease.
In a study of 93,600 women, researchers found that people who consume many foods rich in anthocyanin have a much lower risk of heart attack.
Another analysis of 13 observational studies, which included about 350 people, had similar results. He found that an increase in flavonoid intake of 10 mg per day was associated with a 5% lower risk of heart disease.
It has also been proven that increasing the intake of dietary anthocyanins lowers blood pressure and the risk of coronary heart disease.
Cabbage can protect against heart disease. Especially for the health of the heart is good red cabbage.
6. Could lower blood pressure
More than a billion people worldwide suffer from hypertension, and it is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke.
Doctors often advise patients with high blood pressure to reduce salt intake. However, recent evidence suggests that increasing potassium intake is just as important for lowering blood pressure.
Potassium is an important mineral and electrolyte that helps the body to function properly. One of its main objectives is to help regulate blood pressure by counteracting the effects of sodium in the body.
Potassium helps excrete excess sodium through urine. It also relaxes the walls of the blood vessels, which lowers blood pressure.
Although both sodium and potassium are important for health, the diet of a modern person is too saturated with sodium and contains very few foods that are sources of potassium.
White cabbage is an excellent source of potassium, satisfying the body’s need for potassium by 25% (200 grams of white cabbage salad).
Consuming more potassium-rich cabbage is a good way to lower high blood pressure and can help keep it in a healthy range.
Potassium helps maintain blood pressure in a healthy range. Increasing the intake of foods rich in potassium, such as cabbage, may be beneficial in lowering high blood pressure.
7. White cabbage is good for lowering cholesterol.
Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance found in every cell in your body. Some people think that all cholesterol is bad, but it is not. Cholesterol is necessary for the proper functioning of the body.
Critical processes in the body depend on cholesterol, including proper digestion and the synthesis of hormones and vitamin D.
However, people with elevated cholesterol may have a risk of developing heart disease, especially the level of “bad” cholesterol low density lipoproteins.
Cabbage contains two substances that have been shown to reduce unhealthy levels of LDL cholesterol. These are soluble fibers and plant sterols.
There is evidence that soluble fiber helps to reduce the level of “bad” LDL cholesterol by binding to cholesterol in the intestine and not allowing it to be absorbed into the blood.
A large analysis of 67 studies showed that when people consumed 2-10 grams daily. soluble fiber, they experienced a significant reduction in LDL cholesterol levels of about 2.2 mg per deciliter.
White cabbage is a good source of soluble fiber. In fact, about 40% of the fiber found in cabbage is soluble.
Cabbage contains substances called phytosterols . They are plant compounds that are structurally similar to cholesterol, and they reduce LDL cholesterol by blocking the absorption of cholesterol in the digestive tract.
It was found that an increase in consumption of 1 gr. Phytosterol per day reduces the concentration of LDL cholesterol by as much as 5%.
Cabbage is a good source of soluble fiber and plant sterols. It has been proven that these substances reduce the “bad” LDL cholesterol.
8. White cabbage is an excellent source of vitamin K
Vitamin K is a set of fat-soluble vitamins, which plays an important role in the body.
These vitamins are divided into two main groups.
Vitamin K1 (phylloquinone) : found mainly in plant sources.
Vitamin K2 (menaquinone) : found in animal sources and some fermented foods. It is also produced by bacteria in the colon.
White cabbage is a terrific source of vitamin K1, which provides 90% of the recommended daily amount of 100 grams.
Vitamin K1 is a key nutrient that plays many important functions in the body. One of its main functions is to act as a cofactor for the enzymes that are responsible for blood coagulation. Without vitamin K, blood loses its ability to smooth properly, increasing the risk of excessive bleeding.
Vitamin K is crucial for blood clotting. White cabbage is an excellent source of vitamin K1, with 90% of the daily requirement being 100 grams. cabbage.
9. White cabbage is easy to add to your diet.
In addition to the health benefits, cabbage is also quite a tasty vegetable.
It can be eaten raw or cooked, and added to a wide range of dishes, such as salads, soups, stews.
This versatile vegetable can even be fermented and turned into sauerkraut, which is also very good for health.
Cabbage, besides being an ingredient in a variety of simple and complex recipes, is extremely affordable.
Regardless of how you cook cabbage, adding this cruciferous vegetable to your diet is a tasty way to benefit your health.
White cabbage is a versatile vegetable that is easy to include in your diet. You can use it to cook many different dishes, including salads, stews, soups, and also to ferment or marinate to get a tasty snack.
White Cabbage Harm
Unfortunately, cabbage can bring not only benefit, but also harm to the human body.
Cabbage contains a significant amount of raffinose (indigestible sugar), which can block the intestines, causing flatulence or diarrhea. Nursing mothers should avoid eating white cabbage, as this can lead to colic in the baby. Excessive cabbage combined with iodine deficiency can lead to hypothyroidism.
The results of several studies show that a sufficient dose of cruciferous vegetables, which can be consumed by an adult healthy person, is 625 grams per week or 5 servings of 125 grams per week. Try to stick to this recommendation so that white cabbage will benefit you, not harm.
However, remember that every organism is unique. And that suits one – does not fit another. If your body reacts badly to cabbage – do not abuse it. Limit yourself to a small serving or two a week so as not to cause side effects.
1. White cabbage causes increased gas generation
Flatulence or flatulence is perhaps the most notorious of all the cabbage side effects you’ve heard of. And it is true. Like broccoli , cauliflower, and legumes, white cabbage is not easily absorbed by the enzymes of the small intestine. When it enters the colon, the bacteria act on the cabbage, releasing gas. If you experience flatulence or bloating or frequent belching due to cabbage, refraining from eating this vegetable is the only way to solve the problem.
2. Iodine deficiency and thyroid problems
Excessive use of white cabbage can interfere with the normal functioning of the thyroid gland. This is due to the fact that cabbage does not allow iodine to be absorbed by the thyroid gland. If you eat cabbage for a long period of time and in large quantities, it can lead to iodine deficiency, and even hypothyroidism or goiter. If you eat white cabbage within the normal range, there will be no harm, you will only benefit from this vegetable. So just do not overdo it.
Also pay attention to the amount of consumption of other foods that interfere with the absorbability of iodine: cauliflower, spinach, pine nuts, green peas, turnips, Brussels sprouts , broccoli or millet.
If you have diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, such as irritable bowel syndrome, then you should avoid eating white cabbage, because it can harm your body.
Cabbage has a lot of raffinose (a type of sugar called a trisaccharide) that the human digestive system cannot digest. It is contained in insoluble fibers that white cabbage is rich in. If you are healthy and eat the recommended rate of cabbage per week, then insoluble fiber will benefit your body. But if you have intestinal diseases and white cabbage you take in excess, health problems can not be avoided. Fiber can block the intestines or vice versa cause diarrhea.
4. Low blood sugar
When it comes to helping regulate blood sugar levels, white cabbage can do more good than harm. We have already written about the fact that cabbage has the ability to lower the level of glucose in the blood. However, eating cabbage often and in large quantities can lead to a general decrease in the level of sugar, which, in the end, will lead to hypoglycemia.
5. Colic in an infant
As well as white cabbage causes flatulence in adults, it also affects infants, causing colic. It has been proven that feeding a nursing mother affects the health of a child. A general recommendation during breastfeeding is a ban on the use of any gas-forming products, especially in the first 3 months of a child’s life.
6. Interaction with anticoagulants
Cabbage contains 38.2 mcg of vitamin K, an important substance for the functioning of the blood coagulation system. Because anticoagulants and antiplatelet drugs work to prevent coagulation, vitamin K can counter their effects or change their effectiveness. Therefore, if you use warfarins or heparins, consult with your doctor about the possibility of eating cabbage during treatment.
Conclusions about the beneficial and harmful properties of cabbage
Cabbage is an exceptionally healthy product. It has an outstanding nutritional profile and is particularly high in vitamins C and K.
In addition, cabbage can help reduce the risk of certain diseases, improve digestion and fight inflammation.
In addition, cabbage is a tasty and inexpensive ingredient for a variety of dishes.
With so many potential health benefits, it’s easy to see why white cabbage deserves you include it in your diet. But do not forget the rates of consumption of white cabbage. Only by observing them, you will receive benefits for your body and avoid harmful effects.