Good Living

Healthy Food – Bok Choy

• Bok choy is one of the popular very low-calorie leafy vegetables. Nonetheless, it is a very rich source of many vital phytonutrients, vitamins, minerals, and health benefiting antioxidants.

• 100 grams of bok choy carries just 13 calories. It is one of the recommended vegetables in the weight-reduction programs falling under “zero calorie or negative calorie” category of food items, which when eaten would add no extra calories to the body but facilitate calorie (fat) burn and thereby bring a reduction in the body weight.

• As in other Brassica family vegetables, bok choy too contains certain antioxidant plant chemicals such as thiocyanates, indole-3-carbinol, lutein, zeaxanthin, sulforaphane, and isothiocyanates. Together with dietary fiber and vitamins, these compounds help protect against breast, colon, and prostate cancers and help reduce LDL or “bad cholesterol” levels in the blood.

• Fresh bok choy is an excellent source of water-soluble antioxidant, vitamin-C (ascorbic acid). 100 g provides 45 mg or 75% of daily requirements of vitamin-C. Regular consumption of foods rich in vitamin-C helps the body develop resistance against infectious agents and scavenge harmful, pro-inflammatory free radicals from the body.

Bok-choy has more vitamin-A, carotenes, and other flavonoid polyphenolic anti-oxidants than cabbage, cauliflower, etc. Just 100 g of fresh leaves provide 4468 IU or 149% of daily-required levels vitamin A.

Bok Choy is an excellent source of vitamin K, provides about 38% of RDA levels. Vitamin-K has a potential role in the bone metabolism by promoting osteoblastic activity inside bone cells. Hence, enough vitamin-K in the diet makes bone stronger, healthier and delay osteoporosis. Further, vitamin-K also has been found to have an established role in curing Alzheimer’s disease patients by limiting neuronal damage in their brain.

Fresh bok choy is a vital source of B-complex vitamins such as pyridoxine (vitamin B6), riboflavin, pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), pyridoxine, and thiamin (vitamin B-1). These vitamins are essential in the sense that our body requires them from external sources to replenish.

Further, this leafy vegetable is a moderate source of minerals, particularly calcium, phosphorous, potassium, manganese, iron, and magnesium. Potassium is an important electrolyte inside the cells and body fluids that help regulate heart rate and blood pressure. The human body uses manganese as a co-factor for the antioxidant enzyme, superoxide dismutase. Iron is required for the red blood cell formation.

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