Little healthful tidbits that go a long way…proving that good things do come in extremely small packages.We already covered the power of using seeds in our food, but what about the ‘seedlings’ called microgreens (mini-me’s?).
Every few years it seems like a new leafy veggie becomes the darling of the ‘farmers’ market – first swiss chard, then kale, and now….microgreens.
Harvested when they’re just seven to 14 days old, these pint-sized leaves can be far more nutrient dense than their full-grown counterparts, according to a recent study done in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and published in the Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry. “Plants use stored nutrients to grow, so plucking the tiny seedlings early means they still have high levels of vitamins and minerals,” says study coauthor Zhenlei Xiao. Keep in mind, though, that these mini-me’s lack the fiber found in mature plants, so they should supplement the greens you already eat, not replace them.
The best part? Thanks to the concentrated flavour of these five diminutive standouts, they elevate meals in taste as well as nutrition.
Micro Cilantro – 11 times more lutein and zeaxanthin (nutrients that can reduce the risk of cataracts and age-related vision loss) than the same amount of mature cilantro.
Micro Red Cabbage – they outshine full grown cabbage with roughly 260 times the beta-carotene and more than 40 times the Vitamin E.
Micro Purple Mustard Greens – just 4 ounces meet your recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of Vitamin C.Perk: among the tastiest greens with a spicy zing.
Micro Green Daikon Radish – Vitamin E superstar, boasting 165% of your RDA per ounce. By contrast, mature leaves contain only trace amounts of the antioxidant.
Micro Garnet Amaranth (I’ve never heard of this one before) – light red with an earthy flavour, this ranks highest in Vitamin K which is essential for blood clotting and may reduce the risk of bone fractures. Best with grains.
Taken from an article written by Leslie Goldman
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