Bok choy, which is also known as pak choi and white cabbage, comes under the top three on the Aggregate Nutrient Density Index, as it offers the highest level of nutrients per calorie as compared to other foods. It contains 12 calories per 100 grams and packs an effective nutrient punch. It is also a great source of vitamins and minerals and has shown to prevent cancer. It is also one of the most anti-inflammatory foods, making it a vital food.
Read on to know more!
Bok choy, which is also known as pak choi and white cabbage, comes under the top three on the Aggregate Nutrient Density Index, as it offers the highest level of nutrients per calorie as compared to other foods. It contains 12 calories per 100 grams and packs an effective nutrient punch. It is also a great source of vitamins and minerals and has shown to prevent cancer. It is also one of the most anti-inflammatory foods, making it a vital food. Read about its health benefits in detail in the “Health Benefits” section.
Bok choy belongs to a group of vegetables known as cruciferous vegetables. It has a mildly sweet flavour and a crispy texture, which makes it an excellent addition to any dish and can be consumed as an alternative to other leafy greens like kale that is too bitter and collard greens which is too plain.
Bok choy was first cultivated in China and it is also known as Chinese cabbage. It grows from a small black seed in moist soil and in temperature between 50 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit and needs full sun, however afternoon shade can extend its life when the climate is hot. As the plant requires moist soil, it is necessary to irrigate the soil weekly if there is no rainfall, providing about 1 inch of water within a week so that 6 inches of the soil from the top remains moist. Excessive heat or cold can cause bolting, because of which the leaves develop a bitter taste that makes them inedible. Most varieties of bok choy become ready for harvesting after 50 to 60 days after germination.
Although bok choy is a very healthy vegetable saturated with nutrients, it is not recommended to consume it in excessive quantities for anyone as many health issues like thyroid may arise because of it being consumed in too much quantity.
Selection: Choose firm stalks of bok choy without brown spots on it.
Storage: Store in a plastic bag, unwashed in the refrigerator for up to a week.
One cup of raw bok choy, weighing 70 grams (g) contains:
- 9 calories
- 1 g of protein
- 5 g of carbohydrates
- 7 g of dietary fibre
- 0 g of cholesterol
- 1 grams of polyunsaturated fat
- 74 milligrams (mg) of calcium
- 56 mg of iron
- 13 mg of magnesium
- 26 mg of phosphorus
- 176 mg of potassium
- 46 mg of sodium
- 13 mg of zinc
- 5 mg of vitamin C
- 46 micrograms (mcg) of folate
- 156 mcg of vitamin A (RAE)
- 9 mcg of vitamin K
- Cruciferous vegetables, to which bok choy belongs contain glucosinolates that are sulfur-containing chemicals. Compounds like indole, nitrile and sulforaphane are created while chewing and digestion which have proven to protect cells from DNA damage and inactivate carcinogens, thus preventing cancer.
- Bok choy is an antioxidant food which protects our body against free radicals (disease-causing molecules).
- Bok choy helps in reducing inflammation by lowering the risk of unwanted inflammation. It happens because of omega-3s and Vitamin K present in it.
- Bok choy contains Vitamin A and beta-carotene which helps in maintaining eye health.
- Due to the presence of calcium, iron, phosphorous, magnesium and bone building Vitamin K, it helps in maintaining healthy bones and prevents calcium deficiency.
- Calcium and potassium-rich food such as bok choy, lower the blood pressure and helps sodium to process which reduces the damage done to the cardiovascular system by sodium, thus maintaining heart health.
- Vitamin C present in bok choy helps collagen to grow which is a protein needed to keep hair and skin healthy. It improves complexion and smoothens wrinkles.
- Vitamin C performs as an immune system booster and selenium found in bok choy helps stimulate the production of killer T cells. Therefore, it increases the immunity of the body in two ways.
When bok choy is eaten raw, it releases an enzyme known as myrosinase that slows thyroid function and can lead to hypothyroidism. Thus, it is advised to consume it in regulated quantities.
- Lemon Garlic Sauteed Bok Choy Recipe- https://www.inspiredtaste.net/34160/lemon-garlic-bok-choy-recipe/
- Spicy bok choy in garlic sauce- https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/167331/spicy-bok-choy-in-garlic-sauce/
- Bok choy recipe – https://steamykitchen.com/2112-bok-choy-recipe.html
- Bok Choy and Mushroom Stir-Fry – http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/bok-choy-mushroom-stir-fry
- Sauteed Bok Choy and Broccoli – https://www.marthastewart.com/316655/sauteed-bok-choy-and-broccoli