Spinach and kale are both fan favourite greens for many reasons. They both work great in salads, smoothies, and many other culinary creations due to their flavour and diverse health benefits. However, the two are not equal when it comes to health benefits, so if you’ve ever wondered what their differences are, today is your lucky day.
Kale comes the same family as many other vegetables that come in a bunch, such as cabbage and broccoli. One of its main health benefits is the high content of vitamins, such as vitamin K, A, C, B, and E. 1 cup of kale provides more than half of the recommended daily amount of vitamin K and almost a fourth of the daily recommended amount of vitamin C. It is also rich in antioxidants, which are extremely important in preventing oxidative stress that leads to chronic diseases. Specifically, kale can assist in the prevention of some specific cancers, such as ovary, prostate, and breast cancer. It can also lower bad cholesterol levels. Kale also has a great calorie-to-nutrient value, as it is very low in calories and very high in nutrients. It is important to remember that kale does contain something called Goitrin, which can interfere with the proper function of the thyroid. However, this compound disappears when kale is cooked and as long as it is consumed in moderation, should not have a great effect on the majority of people.
Spinach was originally found in Asia, but is grown today all over the world. It has similar nutrients to kale in the sense that it includes the same vitamins, however, spinach is significantly richer in vitamin K. In fact, one cup of spinach provides the entire recommended daily intake of vitamin K, plus more. It also high in antioxidants, specifically the kinds that reduce the risk of prostate cancer, inflammation, and reduce blood pressure. However, spinach contains something called oxalate, which can be damaging to those prone to kidney stones as it may increase the risk of developing the condition. A benefit to spinach is its relatively flavourless nature, making it extremely easy to incorporate into many meals without disrupting the taste.
Overall, both kale and spinach are great option when considering which leafy green to add to your diet. Both are very nutritious and low in calories, making them a great addition to your day-to-day foods!