HomeHealth articlesnutritionWhat Are the Health Benefits of Kale?

Read the article to know all about the use, nutrition content, and multiple health benefits of kale which is considered a good superfood amongst greens.

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Pallavi. C

Published At December 26, 2022
Reviewed AtDecember 26, 2022

What Is Kale?

Kale, also known as leaf cabbage, is a vegetable that belongs to the cabbage family and is cruciferous. Although popularly used even for ornamental purposes, they are usually highly edible, possessing green or purple leaves.

What Are the Different Types, Flavors, and Culinary Uses of Kale?

Kale has a typical bitter flavor that pairs ideally with rich, flavored lentils, steamed, sauteed, boiled, or chopped. It can also be used raw in salad preparations, egg dishes, soups, and stews. For alternative options for fried chips, these kale leaves can be baked and served as chips, too. Some nutritionists would recommend that if kale is roasted in butter or oil or even in case olive oil is rubbed before doing so or adding to the soup or salad, there would be additional healthy fat incorporated.

  • Curly Kale: The widely used curly kale is deep green with a rather intense, bitter flavor.

  • Ornamental Kale: It is used in salads and is either green, white, or purple with good flavor.

  • Tuscan Kale, or the Dinosaur Kale: As the name suggests, it has a somewhat sweeter taste and is bluish-green.

  • Baby Kale: It is most commonly available with more minor, softer leaves and is globally preferred for cooking because of the taste compared to the large kale version.

What Is the Nutrient Content of Kale?

One cup of raw kale, which approximately weighs around 20.6 to 21 grams, should provide nearly 7.2 calories, 0.3 grams of fat, 0.6 grams of protein, and 0.9 grams of carbohydrates alongside a horde of nutrient density (as it is an excellent source of vitamins A, K, and C, potassium calcium).

The following nutrition information is given and enlisted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA):

  • Vitamin A: 49.6 micrograms.

  • Vitamin K: 80.3 micrograms.

  • Vitamin C: 19.2 milligrams.

  • Potassium: 71.7 milligrams.

  • Calcium: 52.3 milligrams.

  • Sodium: 10.9 milligrams.

  • Carbohydrates: 0.9 grams.

  • Fiber: 0.8 grams.

  • Sugars: 0.2 grams.

  • Protein: 0.6 grams.

  • Fat: 0.3 grams.

  • Total calories: 7

The protein, though less in kale, is not only easily digestible, but as it does not have any fat and is low on calories with a high value of daily nutrient intake, it is labeled as a superfood by nutritionists. Kale is also very high in fiber content, making it an excellent addition to promoting cardiovascular and immune health. Incorporating kale into almost any diet form makes it easier for regular consumption.

What Are the Health Benefits of Kale?

  • Protein Content Ensuring Healthy Weight: Kale is a very low-calorie food that can ensure a healthy weight in an individual by causing satiety or feeling full after consumption. This is because it is loaded with fiber and protein, which is a good energy source.

  • Promoting Heart Health: Kale is also categorized along with other cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and leafy greens in the list of vegetables that offer the highest benefits for promoting good cardiovascular health.

  • Anti-Cancer Properties: Kale is a cruciferous vegetable with anti-cancer properties because it contains compounds called glucosinolates, which effectively fight against cancers.

  • Increases Bone Health and Density: Kale, a rich source of vitamin K, is excellent for ensuring bone health. Research also shows that supplementation with kale in daily diet would positively affect bone health, especially in postmenopausal women who would be more prone to bone issues during that period.

  • Cellular Repair and Prevention of Aging: One serving of kale would provide us with nearly 20 percent of the daily intake of vitamin C. Kale helps boost immunity and cell repair and also slows down the aging of cells preventing apoptosis or programmed cell death.

Can Everyone Consume Kale?

  • Individuals prone to pollen-food allergies or pollen-based syndromes would also be potentially reactive or allergic to kale, especially in the raw form. If one suspects a kale allergy, they can talk to their nutritionist, dietician, or healthcare provider.

  • However, clinical research shows that Kale allergy is rare and that adding kale to the diet may help eliminate other possible allergies. Some clinical studies have pointed to the fact that post the regular consumption of kale for around 12 weeks, the clinical trial participants reported fewer allergies to mites, house dust, or environmental triggers causing nasal discharge.

  • Because kale is also an important source of vitamin K, it is essential to monitor its interaction with blood thinners like warfarin. The healthcare provider can help with the amount of kale one should consume or whether it is to be avoided if individuals are on anticoagulant medications.

How to Store Kale?

Kale is available throughout the year in all the seasons globally, with the peak season in the winter. When buying kale, fresh kale should be purchased that is crisp and has a grayish-green color in appearance.

  • Kale should be stored ideally in the coldest part of the refrigerator for a few days, but it is better to consume it soon after purchase.

  • They can be preserved even for one to two months, but wilting of kale should be avoided.

  • To avoid or prevent wilting of the leaves, place the kale in a plastic bag and do not close it tightly.

  • In the frozen form, it can last longer.


Kale contains no fat on the whole and is thus considered a global green superfood that can charge up the daily meal with nutrition-dense richness.

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Dr. Pallavi. C
Dr. Pallavi. C

Pediatric Dentistry

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