Sauerkraut May Be The Optimum Way To Eat Cabbage
Cabbage is one of the most nutrient packed vegetables and because of its cultivation, is quite inexpensive. While cooking cabbage can destroy many of the nutrients, eating it raw or steamed lightly will provide most, if not all, of the nutrients that are available. One component of cabbage, sinigrin, is known to be effective at fighting cancers but its effectiveness is diminished when cabbage is cooked.
Eating one cup of raw cabbage will provide you with over forty percent of the recommended daily allowance of Vitamin C which is an essential vitamin for general health. If you're looking for some inexpensive ways to get a nutrient boost in your diet by using cabbage, here's a couple of ideas:
Cabbage in Coleslaw
Coleslaw is a great way to get cabbage into your diet. In fact, more than fifty percent of cabbage consumption in the US is through coleslaw salads. This salad, of which there are several ways to prepare it, is loved by most people if sales of store purchased and prepared coleslaws are any indication. Most store purchased prepared coleslaw salads retain the vitamins and minerals that are in cabbage, and also come in different styles. Some styles of coleslaw have a very simple recipe made up of ingredients of shredded green cabbage simply mixed with vinegar and perhaps an additional sweetener such as sugar. Other creamier versions may have buttermilk, mayonnaise and cheese.
Coleslaw that contains dairy product cannot be stored as long, and all of these salads should be stored in the refrigerator to prevent contamination.
You can make your own coleslaw from scratch by shredding cabbage you purchase and often, pre-shredded cabbage is available in packaged form at many supermarkets. Also, if you are making a creamy coleslaw, consider using yogurt as a substitute for mayonnaise.
Sauerkraut has been known and eaten for thousands of years and some of the first references to it are in ancient Chinese literature. Although it has been consumed in Europe for centuries, it was not until the voyages of Captain James Cook that it was realized that sauerkraut could have life savings benefits. By ensuring his crews ate plenty of the fermented cabbage, he managed to prevent outbreaks of scurvy which kept his crew members aboard his ships on long voyages alive. This is due to its Vitamin C content which is very high, and prevents scurvy.
Sauerkraut may actually be an even better way to eat cabbage than eating it raw, as in addition to vitamin C, the fermentation process of making it creates other compounds which are known to be highly effective at preventing cancer. In making sauerkraut, there is a lactobacterial fermentation that occurs, and substances called isothiocyanates are created. These substances can help prevent many types of cancers (source) and could be of benefit to those who consume sauerkraut regularly.
In addition to having a high number of antioxidants, sauerkraut also plays a role in aiding digestion (although those who may be sensitive to acids may have the opposite result) and could also help to fight against viruses such as the common cold and influenza.
Sauerkraut has shown to be a libido enhancer as well – men, if you wanted to have a reason to stock up on this fermented product, here's a good one. A study of 90 men found that after sauerkraut consumption, there was also an increase in libido. As well, a top nutritionist in Croatia, Dr. Kreho, suggests that eating pickled cabbage or sauerkraut twice a day will see a marked increase in libido.