What is Swiss Chard?
Swiss chard is a leafy green vegetable that is scientifically classified as beta vulgaris subsp. vulgaris, Cicla Group and Flavescens Group and it belongs to the family Chenopodiaceae. Swiss chard is actually a common name, but in reality, you can simply call the vegetable ‘chard’. Think of chard almost as two vegetables in one as both the leaves and stems can be used. Swiss chard comes in various types depending on shine, crunchy stalks, and petiole. There’s the green stalk (Lucullus), Red stalk (Charlotte, Rhubarb chard), and multicolor stalks (bright lights).
Health Benefits of Swiss-Chard
Brain Booster: Swiss chard is a valuable source of both potassium and vitamin K, both of which are found in significant amounts in the brain, and are integral parts of boosting cognitive development and abilities. Add some Swiss chard to your diet and expand your mind!
Protects Eye Health: Swiss chard nutrition is an excellent source of carotenoids called lutein and zeaxanthin, which have been getting significant research attention lately due to their ability to protect vision and ward off eye disorders.
Bone Health: Swiss chard has a significant amount of calcium in those leaves, which means that Swiss chard is a major boost for bone health. Calcium, as well as the other minerals found in this vegetable help to stimulate bone growth and development, including magnesium and vitamin K.
Blood Circulation: Iron and copper are both essential elements of red blood cells, and without those two minerals, people can develop anemia, which shows itself as weakness, fatigue, stomach disorders, and lack of concentration. By ensuring a proper amount of red blood cells by eating food like Swiss chard, you can increase circulation of the blood and oxygenation of essential organs within the body.
Lowering blood pressure: People who consume diets that are low in the minerals calcium, magnesium and potassium are more likely to have high blood pressure. These minerals are thought to bring blood pressure down by releasing sodium out of the body and helping arteries dilate.
Uses of Swiss-Chard
You can take advantage of the benefits of Swiss chard nutrition by using it in recipes the same way many other greens are used- like kale, spinach, collard greens, or mustard greens. Cooking Swiss chard brings out a natural sweetness and decreases bitterness, making Swiss chard a great addition to a variety of hearty and savory recipes.
The stem is often steamed and served separately. The leaves cook more quickly than the stem and can be added to soups, flans, tarts and omelettes. They are also sometimes used as a substitute for spinach. Both stem and leaves can be sautéed with cream, butter and cheese. Wash well, before use, to remove any grit, and trim only when ready to cook.
Nutritional Information of Swiss-Chard
The many health benefits attributed to chard are due to its impressive list of vitamins, nutrients, and organic compounds, which include vitamins K, C, and A, as well as vitamin E, riboflavin, and vitamin B6. In terms of minerals, Swiss chard has a wealth of magnesium, manganese, potassium, iron, sodium, and copper. Furthermore, in addition to dietary fiber, Swiss chard has a significant amount of polyphenolic antioxidants, phytonutrients, and enzymes that are unique and highly beneficial to your health.