Health Benefits of Cabbage

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I thought since I am craving cabbage almost daily now, I would do today’s blog on it. 

Cabbage does have excellent healing properties.  It helps dry up milk flow in mothers that are ending breastfeeding, lower cholesterol, boost your immune system and is even thought to ease the pain of rheumatism and arthritis. 

Cabbage and Your Heart

Cabbage is high in Potassium.  Potassium is a vasodilator which expands blood vessels allowing for easier blood flow. 

Cabbage is high in fat soluble fibre which stops cholesterol absorption.  Soluble fibre slows digestion and decreases the bile that is reabsorbed into the body. 

It is thought that steamed cabbage is the best way to lower cholesterol.  Raw cabbage has a high fibre content but steamed is better.  Microwaving cabbage eliminates a large number of it’s health benefits. 

Cabbage and Phytochemicals

According to phytochemicals are non-nutritive plant chemicals that have protective or disease preventative properties.

Antioxidants are present in most phytochemicals.  Antioxidants help prevent free radical damage resulting in slowed aging, healthier skin and less body damage in muscles, bones and organs.  For more info see my blog Antioxidants and Free Radicals

Cabbage and Cancer Prevention

Many studies have been done on the relationship between cabbage and cancer prevention.  Some have shown that eating cabbage at least 3 times a week during adolescence can reduce the likelihood of breast cancer later in life. 

The anti-cancer properties of cabbage are thought to be attributed to antioxidants, anti-inflammatory actions and glucosinates. 

In times past herbalists and doctors would recommend a poultice of cabbage applied to the breast to treat breast cancer.  Did it work?  There is no evidence one way or another.


Cabbage as a Detox 

The high vitamin C and sulphur content of cabbage helps detoxify the body.  It removes uric acid and free radicals.  This makes it excellent for 

  • gout
  • rheumatism
  • skin disorders
  • arthritis

Cabbage and Pain Relief

Externally a warmed cabbage leaf applied to a swollen and achy joint has been found to reduce the pain and swelling.  Applying a chilled cabbage leaf to swollen engorged breasts caused by breast feeding has also been known to reduce the pain. 

Internally cabbage has been used to prevent internal bleeding, ease constipation and assist digestion.   

Cabbage and Your Immune System

Obviously the high antioxidant and anti-inflammatory actions of cabbage are a big part of it’s benefit for the immune system.  In addition to these actions cabbage contains glutathione which is an excellent antioxidant and assists in removing waste from the body. 

Cabbage Vitamin C and Connective Tissue

This is possibly my favourite interaction between a vitamin and the body.  Vitamin C is essential for boosting the immune system, it is a superb antioxidant and most importantly it is vital for the creation of collagen and the strengthening of the bodies connective tissue.

Connective tissue is the support system for every tissue in your body and cannot be created without vitamin C.

How does this relate to cabbage?  Cabbage is extremely high in vitamin c.  As a matter of fact it has more vitamin c than oranges. 

Although cabbage has been known to cause gas, even the Romans joked about this, it is definitely one of the cruciferous vegetables that you need to include in your diet.