NUTRITION CORNER: Cabbage helps our body develop resistance to infectious agents

Cabbage (scientific name: Brassica oleracea) is one of the widely cultivated crops around the world because it is rich in phyto-nutrients. This crop is one of the leafy vegetables cultivated in Benguet, aside from cauliflower and broccoli. In Ilocos Sur, cabbage is cultivated in San Vicente and Santa Catalina.

There are many health benefits that we can derive from cabbage. Fresh, dark green-leafy cabbage is very nutritious and low in fat and calories as it provides only 25 calouries per 100 grams.

Cabbage is a rich source of phyto-chemicals like thiocyanates, indole-3-carbinol, lutein, zeaxanthin, sulforaphane and isothiocyanates. These compounds are powerful anti-oxidants which help protect against breast, colon, and prostate cancers and help reduce LDL or “bad cholesterol: levels in the blood.

Fresh cabbage is not only a great source of Vitamin C, a natural antioxidant, which helps our body develop resistance against infectious agents and scavenge harmful-pro-inflammatory free radicals but also a good source of  other essential vitamins  such as pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), pyridoxine (vitamin B-6) and thiamin (vitamin B-1). Health authorities say these vitamins are essential because our body acquires them from external sources to replenish.

It is also rich in vitamin K, which has an important role in bone metabolism and in the cure of Alzheimer’s disease by limiting neu-ronal damage in the patient’s brain.

No wonder that the Chinese attribute their youthful appearance to eating this vegetable.#