Sunday, May 20, 2012

Rutabagas Rule

Well, maybe not rule, but rutabagas (one of the many Brassica vegetables I write about on this blog) are right up there in the running as a great food source for a molecule called apigenin, which has been shown to actually reverse an aggressive type of breast cancer in mice. I wrote about this study on my blog earlier this week and realized I should cross - post the study on my kale blog, too, even though apigenin is not in kale or other typical Brassica vegetables like broccoli.

Why? This type of research substantiates my advice to continue to eat a variety of whole foods (even rutabagas!, which are my husband's favorite vegetable). Why again? Because there is no one food, no one group of foods, and no one molecule in foods that will ever be the proverbial 'magic bullet'.

Not only is there more to learn about each food and/or each molecule, more importantly, we will never fully understand the complexity of biological interactions as these hundreds (if not thousands) of molecules consumed in our foods are working together synergistically to promote optimal functioning and health. 

Here is a chart showing which foods have apigenin and which foods contain other health-promoting compounds called flavonoids, of which apigenin is only one. (For comparative purposes, there are over 600 known carotenoids, of which beta-carotene found in foods like carrots is only one of them. Just think of the potential interactions going on in the body mixing just flavonoids and carotenoids!)

You can't go wrong by eating whole foods. Who knew even the leaves of Queen Anne's lace are a high source of apigenin? Next time I'm weeding them out of the garlic fields, I'll certainly look at them differently and even try to add some of the leaves to our salad that night!

Here is Dick's recipe for Glazed Rutabagas. :) You will notice that his blog should now be called "no time 4 blogging" instead of "no time 4 bland food". Something happened in 2009 - oh yes, we bought this foreclosed property and started this farm!! I give up sleep to blog. :)

Where kale is more than decoration on my plate, along with the leaves from pesky garden weeds!

Diana Dyer, MS, RD


Unknown said...

I really like your Blog. I am a holistic nutritionist and have a couple of questions. Have you ever heard of an allergic reaction to raw kale? I ate a red kale salad and my throat swelled and felt raw and burnt for a few days. I felt it was the oxalates. Also I have been told that the nutrients stay bound up in raw kale and are only released and absorbable after cooking/steaming. Any insights?

Diana Dyer said...

I am not able to diagnose specific allergies. While I do not have any first hand knowledge of a kale (Brassica, oxalate) allergy, I am sure anything is possible.

If you do a search on my blog using the term 'absorption', you will bring up a couple of past blog posts where I discuss some aspect of your second question. Short answer = variety, variety, variety of cooking techniques. :)