Health & NutritionThe globe artichoke is a very ancient vegetable and has appeared many times in both literature and mythology. It has been used medicinally for centuries and yet it is surprising that their health benefits remain unknown to modern society and that only a small percentage of people consume them on a regular basis today. However, we need to be reintroduced to the powerful health benefits of an artichoke. A substantial body of research show that the globe artichoke;•improves digestive health disorders•helps lower cholesterol levels•is very high in dietary fibre•has important properties for healthy liver function•is an excellent source of Vitamin C•is a good source of protein and foliate•high in iron, niacin and phosphorus•very high in magnesium and potassium•rich in antioxidants•low in saturated fats•can act as a diuretic•low in sodiumArtichoke health benefits are numerous. They contain more antioxidants than red wine and, as they are high in plant protein, are ideal for vegetarians not wanting animal protein in their diet.
Artichokes are high in antioxidantsExciting studies show that globe artichokes contain an unusual amount of antioxidants. Phytonutrients are nutrients obtained from plant material that are necessary for sustaining humans. It has been proven that our good health depends on them. In the last decade, nutritional research studies show that Phytonutrients contain protective, disease-preventing compounds. One of the major classes of Phytonutrients is antioxidants. Antioxidants are vital in the prevention of cellular damage, which is the common pathway for cancer, ageing and a range of diseases. One significant antioxidant is flavonoids. Flavonoids are compounds found in fruits or vegetables, which have potential beneficial effects on human health, helping to protect the body from many diseases. An important Flavonoid is Luteolin; which has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-tumour properties.Luteolin has been shown to prevent LDL-cholesterol oxidation and can reduce the chance of arterial disease. Luteolin, amongst other antioxidants, is found in leaves, and in high amounts in artichokes.
The King of Vegetables For centuries globe artichokes were considered to have many health benefits. They were used as a diuretic, an aphrodisiac, and used as a deodorant or a breath freshener. They were used to treat indigestion, lower cholesterol, improve bile production, detox the liver, improve skin and used as a source of dietary fibre.
Artichokes are rich in dietary fibreGlobe artichokes are low in calories and fat, but are a rich source of dietary fibre which can be easily digested. Dietary fibre is found only in plants, and is mainly needed to keep the digestive system healthy. It also contributes to other processes, such as stabilising glucose and cholesterol levels, and helps prevent colon cancer.While all plants contain some fibre, plants with high fibre concentrations (like the globe artichoke) are generally the most practical source. Dietary fibre is a type of carbohydrate and contributes less energy than sugars and starches because it cannot be fully absorbed by the body.Dietary fibre can also aid in weight control, as it makes you feel full.
Parsley, lemon and garlic are some of the oldest and healthiest foods known in history, and they are an excellent accompaniment to the artichoke. Most artichoke recipes will contain all or most of these ingredients. The good news is eaten together, they become a power food, ideal for good health.Although parsley contains more Vitamin C than most citrus fruits, lemons, garlic and artichokes are also particularly high in Vitamin C, which is known for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It boosts the immune system and is a preventive against infections and colds. For centuries parsley and lemon, like the globe artichoke, have been considered one of the most effective remedies for indigestion.a
In some countries, artichokes are made into an herbal tea, which acts as a diuretic, improves liver function and helps to lower elevated blood pressure.