If you're looking at the relative health values of different green vegetables, you may be interested in all of the stuff that is inside artichokes that helps provide specific benefits for the body. The artichoke is renowned as a curative medicinal plant in some historic cultures for a number of reasons. Scientists today look at how various elements of this plant can promote overall wellness. Here are some of the major health benefits of the artichoke.
1. Antioxidants for Overall Health
Like other green plants, fresh artichokes have a lot of antioxidant value. The class of natural plant nutrients called antioxidants helps to prevent some kinds of cancer, as well as heart disease and other illnesses. Specific kind of antioxidants in the artichoke include quercetin and a flavonoid called rutin, both of which are helpful in fighting off illness.
2. Lower Cholesterol
The cyanic properties in the artichoke help the body to excrete bad cholesterol and assist in balanced cholesterol levels that help those with high cholesterol. That's another reason that the artichoke can help prevent some kinds of heart disease.
3. Blood Glucose Levels
Scientific evidence shows that the artichoke can help balance blood glucose levels and help deal with diabetes. Foods on this side of the glycemic index are often prescribed for patients dealing with a blood sugar imbalance.
4. Improved Liver Function
The artichoke plant has been known as a liver tonic for centuries. Its natural properties help the body get rid of toxins and assist the liver in its vital operations.
5. Digestive Value
Another health benefit of the artichoke is its role as a digestive aid. Like a variety of other green plants including parsley, the artichoke was often used to soothe the stomach in past cultures. Today, nutritionists sometimes recommend the artichoke as a cure for irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS. One reason that the artichoke helps with digestion, according to some scientists, is that it helps to stimulate the gall bladder.
6. Helping with Hypertension
Artichokes have a good deal of potassium, a mineral that's generally good for you. Potassium helps deal with excess sodium, and for those who are taking some kinds of anti-hypertensive drugs, foods like artichokes can be a way to hedge against a potential potassium deficiency.
These are some of the main health benefits of artichokes as a popular green food. To get the most out of this and other green plants in your diet, the best way is to use the freshest produce. Artichokes do usually require some kind of cooking, but that doesn't mean you can't enjoy them in a relatively fresh form. Lightly steamed artichokes can supply a lot of the above nutritional elements in a convenient way. Think about adding the artichoke to dips, salads, sandwiches and more for an overall health boost and to get some of the specific nutrients that you need in your diet.