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Take a leek at this!

LEEKS belong to the same family as garlic, onions, chives and shallots, unlike the other family members, they don’t form a bulb.

Not all the vegetable is edible. The dark, green sheaths at the top can be discarded. Leeks originated in the Middle East and the Mediterranean region. In much of Asia and Europe, people have been growing leeks as food for several thousand years.

They can be prepared and eaten in much the same way as people eat onions. You can consume them cooked in a variety of ways, or enjoy them raw, as part of a salad.

Nutritional value

A 100g serving of leeks contains around 2g of dietary fibre and a gram of protein. The bulk of the vegetable is made up of water, but they do contain several important minerals. These include Vitamins A, C, E and B6, as well as calcium, iron, magnesium and manganese.

Heart health

Numerous studies have demonstrated that vegetables belonging to the allium family can have a positive impact on blood pressure. Reducing blood pressure is very important to take the strain off the cardiovascular system, reducing the risk of strokes, heart disease, heart attacks and atherosclerosis.

Anti-bacterial

Garlic and onions have been well researched in terms of their anti-bacterial properties. Leeks contain the same compounds which make those other allium vegetables so effective in combating bacterial infection.

Digestive health

Leeks are actually a natural source of prebiotics. Prebiotics are the good type of bacteria that thrive in the digestive tract. They contribute to a healthy digestive system, and play an important role in the absorption of nutrients.

Eating leeks can help keep the stomach’s bacterial environment in balance, help to eliminate toxins and stimulate digestive fluids. All these factors contribute to a healthy digestive system, and can help improve overall health.

Bone health

Leeks can help keep your bones healthy and strong, and reduce the risk of developing conditions like osteoporosis. They contain a good amount of calcium, as well as magnesium, both of which are vital to ensuring bone health.

Blood booster

Leeks contain a good amount of iron which help prevent anaemia and similar conditions. Symptoms of anaemia, stemming from iron deficiency, include fatigue, headaches and general weakness. Leeks are also a good source of Vitamin C, which helps the body to absorb iron better.

Pregnant women

Pregnant women and their unborn children can benefit a great deal from eating leeks. The vegetable contains a high level of folate acid, as well as many other nutritional compounds like niacin and thiamin, that can help women during pregnancy. Folate, in particular, can help to prevent a newborn child from certain neural defects.

Leeks are absolutely delicious, easy to prepare and can be cooked in a variety of ways, in a range of recipes. When buying fresh leeks, look for dark green leaves and a white neck.

To prepare your leek, cut off the greens at the top and dispose of the root and outer layers. Wash the edible part of the leek and slice to your preferred thickness. They are delicious sautéed in olive oil and garlic, or added to soups, stews and salads.

 

Short URL: http://www.canarianweekly.com/?p=50226

Posted by on Oct 11 2019. Filed under Food. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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