Did you know about the countless amazing benefits of endive? It’s not surprising that endive is probably not the most famous food out there but nonetheless, it’s a superfood that you should incorporate into your diet if you haven’t already. Here, we are going to discuss why endive is so beneficial for your overall physical and even mental health.
Endive is low caloric food that aids in weight loss, it is rich in vitamin K, can prevent diabetes, regulates sugar level, ensures good bowel movement, promotes healthy pregnancy, eases insomnia, helps your eyesight, aids in recovering from anorexia, and can help you with mental health issues.
On top of that endive is probably the most elegant vegetable in the whole world, however, it’s not the cheapest one.
What are the Health Benefits of Endive?
Apart from all the listed health benefits above, endive has so much to offer.
More benefits of endive
Since endive is well known for its low calories, it is very well known as a plant that can aid in weight loss. Approximately 50 g of chopped Endive has 8.6 calories. Endive is one of the best foods out there for weight loss. Many swear that endive is a staple food in their diet.
Another benefit of endive comes from vitamin K which is abundantly found in endive. Vitamin K is crucial for helping your body with blood coagulation and improving your overall health. Vitamin K can prevent osteoporosis later in life and it can prevent cancer.
Multiple studies are high in fiber which can prevent diabetes. Endive should be a part of your diet if you are trying to decrease blood sugar levels or a level of cholesterol. Polyphenols that can be found in endive can help you keep your arteries and blood vessels flexible.
On top of this, we can add that endive is good for bowel movement. When patients are suffering from conditions such as constipation, many doctors suggest for patients incorporate endive into their diet.
Many pregnant women suggested that endive can make pregnancy easier and smoother. Additionally, folate that can be found in endive is crucial for preventing birth defects.
Benefits of endive are from oral care, skincare benefits, helping with insomnia, improving eyesight, and helping people recover from anorexia.
Why is Endive so Expensive?
If you have ever seen endive in the store or on the market, you will probably notice that is pricey. Why endive is expensive? In New York City, the price of endive is anywhere between $2 and $5 per pound. The price of course heavily depends on the season and quality.
The main reason behind the price is a complicated growing procedure. Endive must be planted not once but twice. First time during chilly North Sea spring when seeds are going to produce carrot-shaped root from which endive will eventually grow.
By June, endive’s leaves and roots are pulled. The roots are gathered in containers and usually kept in dark barns. After that endive is replanted or stored for up to seven months and then again planted as needed. After four to six weeks, the white leaves are ready for harvest and dug again by hand while the root is cut off and discarded.
The Legend Behind the Endive
It’s understandable why endive is so expensive. The process of proper care for endive care and growth was discovered by accident. In the early 19th century, the villagers from a remote area around Brussels grew wheat and potatoes. They also grew chicory roots which were used to brew ersatz coffee since the real coffee was expensive due to being imported from distant countries. Chicory roots were taken later on to the factories and farmers kept some part of the endive for their own personal use. During this time, Belgium was in a fight for its independence. Farmers and families fled the country. After that people returned to their farms. Once they returned one farmer noticed that some of the chicory roots have yellow-white shoots growing from the roots. Fresh vegetables were hard to find at that time and villagers started cooking endives.
That’s the legend behind the endive.
Is Endive a Vegetable?
Is endive a vegetable? Yes, it is. Endive is a leafy vegetable with somewhat a bitter taste. Endive has narrow green leaves with white stems and it can be of different types. Mostly, the endive is cooked but it can be enjoyed raw as well. It can be served as a side dish, added to cold salads or hot meals.
Endive is available as a whole or bunched. If you want to prepare endive you should remove any damaged outer layers, rinse it, cut off the base or trim the base, cut into the desired length. If you are cooking endive, prepare approximately 300 – 400 grams per person or if it’s used raw, the perfect measure is 100 grams per person. Keep in mind that endive will shrink when cooked so you don’t have to worry too much if you are cooking it in the pot or pan.
When purchasing endive, you should make sure that the plant looks fresh, feels firm and it has a consistent color. As with most fresh plants, the bottom of the stem should not be brownish or appear to be moist. Keep in mind that the endive is a sensitive vegetable so it should be stored in higher humidity and a cool environment. After buying endive, it should be consumed within three to four days.