Remarkable Health Benefits of Purple Cabbage (Red Cabbage)

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Impressive Benefits of Purple Cabbage

If you have seen purple cabbage plant, you might be wondering is purple cabbage good for you? Cabbage is a very popular vegetable and there are many benefits of eating purple cabbage. Read on to find out more about purple cabbage health benefits.

Most of us think of cabbage as a green veggie. However, there are others like purple cabbage, Napa cabbage (an oblong shaped cabbage with thick stems and frilly leaves) savoy cabbage with tender leaves, etc. Let’s check out the top health benefits of purple cabbage!

Difference Between Green and Purple Cabbage

What is purple cabbage? Purple cabbage also goes by the name red cabbage, as the color is reddish purple.

Remember: The taste of both remains the same, so you can substitute one for the other in a recipe.

Warning: However, purple cabbage could discolor other foods!

  • The obvious difference is the color!
  • Is purple cabbage better than green cabbage? Purple cabbage is healthier than green cabbage. It helps towards a healthier heart and stronger bones.
  • Purple cabbage is more peppery compared to green cabbage

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Nutritional Values of Purple Cabbage

Let’s compare the nutritional content of purple cabbage and green cabbage! Check out the nutrition in purple cabbage!

  • One cup of green cabbage will give you 2% of your daily vitamin A requirement, whereas purple cabbage will add 20%. Vitamin A is useful for maintaining the teeth, skin and skeletal tissues, among other benefits.
  • It boosts the Vitamin C in your diet. One cup of chopped purple cabbage offers you 85% of your daily requirement.
  • One of the important benefits of purple cabbage is that one shredded cup adds 4% of iron to your diet.

Purple cabbage boasts one extra nutrient not seen in green cabbage. The anthocyanins present in them are the antioxidants that give it the purple color. These are flavonoids that can improve memory and even fight cancer. It also helps reduce weight by suppressing the appetite and metabolising fat in the body.

Health Benefits of Purple Cabbage

What are the health benefits of purple cabbage? Purple cabbage belongs to the Brassica category of plants, which also includes broccoli, kale and Brussels sprouts. All of these are known for their health benefits and are backed by science.

  • One of the benefits of purple cabbage is that it helps towards a healthier heart and stronger bones.
  • It can also lower inflammation and can prevent some types of cancers.
  • It is rich in nutrients. One cup of shredded purple cabbage contains:
  • 22 calories
  • One gram protein
  • 7 grams carbs
  • 2 grams of fiber
  • (of your daily value) 56% Vitamin C; 28% Vitamin K; 11% Vitamin B6; 6% of Vitamin A; 5% of Potassium.
  • 5% Thiamine
  • 5% Riboflavin
  • Small amounts of magnesium; phosphorus; calcium; iron; copper and zinc.
  • It contains antioxidants like anthocyanins and kaempferol, in higher amounts than seen in green cabbage. It is the one food that offers the highest amount of antioxidants.
  • It contains sulforaphane, which is useful for fighting cancer and beneficial to the heart.
  • Another of the benefits of purple cabbage is that it helps fight gut inflammation.

You can also apply cabbage green or purple leaves to the affected area to reduce inflammation!

purple cabbage helps fight inflammation

Also See: Lettuce vs. Cabbage: Difference Between Cabbage and Lettuce

Tips for Cooking Purple Cabbage

In order to derive the best health benefits of this amazing leafy vegetable, we recommend the following ways of cooking.

  • Firstly, it is recommended that you have a minimum 3/4 cup of cruciferous vegetables like purple cabbage per day. You may of course increase this to 1 to 1.5 cups a day.

Remember: Traditional methods of cooking greens, such as boiling or steaming, could make purple cabbage watery.

  • Try a healthy saute instead. Just slice the purple cabbage into 1/8th inch slices and allow it to rest for a few minutes before you start the process.
  • Healthy saute means you expose it to minimum heat and minimal contact with cooking liquids.
  • Steaming is best to preserve the Vitamin C.
  • Fermentation could also increase the antioxidants in it.
  • Raw cabbage can also offer a lot more nutrients than cooked and fermented cabbage.
  • Try out a purple cabbage juice!

Remember to buy purple cabbage that is dense and shiny, free of cracks and bruises, and with only a few loose leaves. Avoid pre cut cabbage, as it loses its Vitamin C. Store it in a plastic bag and place it in the crisper of the refrigerator. It will stay fresh for nearly 2 weeks.

Note: While cooking purple cabbage, if you wish to retain the purple color, add apple cider vinegar or acidic fruit to it.

Purple Cabbage Recipes

You can eat it raw or cooked!

Remember: The outer layers are generally wilted and must be discarded before preparing!

  • What to do with purple cabbage? Thinly sliced purple cabbage can be eaten raw. You can also add these to stir fries, soups or braises.
  • Use large whole leaves as a holder for rolls.
  • Mix purple cabbage with green ones and add lemon juice, some olive oil and black pepper to make purple cabbage coleslaw.
  • You can also serve it with grilled meat; olive oil; butter; eggs and cheeses and use them with avocados and chillies.

Purple Cabbage Health Benefits

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Side Effects of Eating Too Much Cabbage

Purple cabbage belongs to the cruciferous veggie family and has plenty of health benefits, as can be seen from above. However, there are some hazards with overeating cabbage.

  • Riffinose is a kind of sugar that is not digested and could cause flatulence, belching and bloating.
  • It is fibrous and if you overeat, it could block the intestines and cause diarrhoea.

Pregnant or breastfeeding women should avoid eating purple cabbage, as infants could develop colic. Diabetics should consult the doctor before consuming it, as it could affect the blood sugar level.

If you are on blood thinning medications, limit the amount of purple cabbage you eat, as it has a lot of Vitamin K that helps blood to clot. The recommended amount of Vitamin K is 120 mg for men and 90 mg for women. One cup of purple cabbage contains 34 mg of Vitamin K.

Wrap Up – Benefits of Purple Cabbage

Purple cabbage is distinguished by its purple color and its bitter, peppery flavor. Purple cabbage or red cabbage contains a lot of vitamins and important nutrients.

Regular consumption of the prescribed amount will prevent cancer risks, improve the immune system, help reduce weight and also prevent premature ageing, among other benefits. You can eat it raw as well as cooked and it is an essential part of the cuisine in most parts of the world.

Purple cabbage may not be ranked as an all time favourite vegetable for many people, but I’m sure you would add it to your regular diet considering its myriad benefits!

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