Saturday, April 19, 2008
Artichokes Health Benefits
The globe artichoke served hot or cold is a delicacy and a very nutritious vegetable. The globe artichoke is the flower bud of a large, thistlelike plant, with just a few edible parts, the heart and the tender fleshy part at the base of the tough outer leaves.
When preparing a fresh artichoke, the thorny top and leaf tips are trimmed away the vegetable is the boiled, steamed or baked. Artichokes can be served many ways, but the most popular way is to dip the edible portion of the leaves in a sauce. This sauce determines whether an artichoke is a healthy treat or a high calorie food. Using high fat sauces like Hollandaise and melted butter are traditional favorites, a more healthy choice is lemon juice with a dash of olive oil.
A real large artichoke provides 12 percent of the daily requirements of foloate, 20 percent of vitamin C, 300mg of potassium, and about 2g of fiber.All artichokes contain cynarin, a chemical said to improve liver function and lower blood cholesterol, these claims are unproved. Also lacking proof are claims that artichokes lower blood sugar and stimulate bile flow.
The artichoke is a member of the sunflower or composite, plant family.Persons who are allergic to ragweed pollen may react to artichokes because of cross reacting antgens that respond to both allergens.
*A good source of folate, vitamin C,
*Low in calories and high in Fiber.
*May provoke allergic reaction in
people sensitive to ragweed.