Trust me when I say that I was so surprised when I heard how much health benefits of arugula there
When I first started eating it I was combining arugula with lettuce. However, in recent times I started eating arugula alone.
I don’t know why, but the taste of it just feels perfect and it helps that it can be grown on your balcony.
Arugula is a perfect salad for someone like me, don’t get me wrong I like lettuce but… I like to eat my salad raw.
In addition this is why I fell in love with arugula, it has so much taste and flavor even without oil, salt and vinegar.
The other reason I increased my arugula dosage is that I found out how much healthy it is.
Above all, health benefits of arugula make it a must have addition to almost every meal.
You can eat it alone, in a salad, with fruit, with cheese, however you like. This is why I decided to write this article about arugula and its health benefits.
I will be talking about what is arugula. Arugula nutrition. How to grow and harvest arugula.
In addition I will add some easy to make recipes with arugula.
What Is Arugula?
Arugula is one or two year green plant which has characteristic smell.
It grows up to 24 inches and is mostly covered in little hairs. In vegetative phase it develops its leaves which can be as long as 8 inches.
With higher temperatures flower stem is developed. Flowers are white or yellowish, with a little of purple lines.
Arugula blossoms during May or June. Seeds are tiny, round with absolute weight of 2 grams.
Arugula comes from family of Brassicaceae, naturally found in Mediterranean. It is grown for human use for a long time.
Arugula is grown for its leaves which have spicy taste, in addition, it is rich in vitamins.
It stimulates human organism, especially digestive system (gut and bowels).
In human diet is used cultivated and self grown arugula. Thanks to its nutrition and health benefits it can be found in many kitchens around the world.
Above all it is very good as addition to sandwiches, salads, pizzas or decorative salad.
However, keep in mind that cultivated arugula is bigger than self grown and is not as bitter.
Leaves of arugula should be used while they are young and juicy.
Short History Of Arugula
Mentions of arugula in these texts are as medical plant as well as food.
However in ancient Rome arugula was used as a spice. Ancient Egyptians made special aphrodisiac which served as a ritual meal for the groom.
In addition, arugula made name for itself in Russia. It was called “singers weed”, special syrup was made from arugula which helped singers recover their voice.
Leaves of arugula are not as much used in India. However, Indians used seeds of arugula to make oil for medical and cosmetic purpose.
Arugula is native to Mediterranean, as its flowers and leaves were used in many Mediterranean cuisines.
Some of those are Morocco, Italy, Greece, Turkey and Croatia.
Plant first made an appearance in America as it was brought there by colonists.
However, arugula rose to popularity in the nineties.
Best climate for arugula is cool to moderate, as too much temperature can make the plant lose flavor.
It is resistant to almost every bug there is thanks to its flavor and scent.
Arugula contains high levels of folic acid and antioxidants. Some of the are vitamins C,K and A, therefore it has success in fighting free radicals.
It is rich in carotenoids as well as many other minerals. Some of them are:
All of which are needed elements in human diet.
Arugula contains phytochemicals which are useful for preventing cancer.
It also has many advantages in comparison to other green plants. Because in addition it has low level of oxalate.
They prevent absorption of minerals in the organism.
In conclusion arugula is low calorie plant rich in nutrients.
Arugula is also rich in fibers which are necessary for digestion. However fibers are also vital for speeding up your metabolism.
Therefore it is highly recommended for persons who would want to lose weight.
In addition to this health benefits of arugula will help your stomach.
By eating arugula, your stomach feels full, therefore reducing desire for sweet and fatty food.
Of course it is known that if you want to lose weight you should avoid sweets and food rich in fats.
Exact arugula composition is next (per 100 grams):
- 25 calories
- 0,7 grams of fat
- saturated fats 0,1 gram
- poly saturated fatty acids 0,3 grams
- mono saturated fatty acids 0 grams
- cholesterol 0 grams
- sodium 25mg
- potassium 369 gm
- carbon hydrates 3,7 grams
- fibers 1,6 grams
- sugar 2,1 gram
- vitamin A2 – 373 mg
- calcium 160 mg
- vitamin C 15 mg
- iron 1,5 mg
- vitamin B6 0,1 mg
- magnesium 47 mg
How To Grow Arugula?
Arugula is a culture with humble demands for heat and it is resistant to frost.
This is why it can be produced during an entire year. It can grown on almost every soil.
Arugula needs rich soil which can contain moisture. During summer heats it may be necessary to create shadow.
If you don’t it may produce leaves with somewhat bad taste.
This plant succeeds best on light and sandy soils with pH neutral or alkaline reaction.
Preparing soil for arugula is similar as for other leafy vegetables. Basic hole should be around 8 inches deep.
Above the hole soil should be stable as arugula is only produced directly with seeds. However, seeds are very small and light.
You can plant arugula from February to September on multiple occasions.
Distance between rows should be around 6-12 inches, and distance between plants 2-4 inches.
It will start growing in matter of days.
Arugula harvest starts 40-60 days after planting it. Leaves are pulled out of the ground easily and washed.
It is all there is in growing and harvesting arugula. It is so much easy that you can grow it on your balcony.
What Does Arugula Taste Like?
Leaves of arugula have mildly spicy taste. It has similar taste to plants in the same family of mustards.
However, some go as far and say that it tastes little like meat.
Arugula should be eaten fresh as a salad or addition to meal.
When I first ate arugula I though that it had taste similar to bacon. Crazy right? I know.
It is funny to eat salad and taste meat. However, I think that because of this it could be perfect for people who are turning vegan.
Above all it could be perfect for those who like their salad tasting like meat.
Health Benefits Of Arugula
Health benefits of arugula are numerous. Experts claim that it preserves heart and reduces risk of many diseases.
In addition it has components which have anticancer effects. Arugula is natural antibiotic. It regulates digestion.
Besides, it cleanses blood, increases liver recovery and reduces risk of breast cancer.
No matter the specific taste it is best eaten raw in salads. However, it keeps its healthy effects when cooked also.
Arugula is a great source of antioxidants and it can improve ORAC value in persons organism.
Which is the way to measure power of that antioxidant.
Antioxidants job is to keep healthy balance of enzyme reactions in cells.
While actively searching and destroying illnesses caused by free radicals which can attack the organism.
Your immune system will be grateful for choosing arugula.
Because of the antioxidants work on improving your defense against simple diseases. Such as cold, or more serious states like cancer, cardiovascular illnesses or aging too soon.
Vitamin A is one of mentioned antioxidants. It’s presence in arugula is also a guarantee for improving state of your bones, teeth and eyes.
It is proven that compounds of flavonoids in green vegetables like arugula protect skin, lungs and oral cavities from cancer.
Brain and bones
One more benefit in including arugula in your everyday diet is vitamin K.
This antioxidant also functions as anti inflammatory influence in your body.
Vitamin K induces osteotropic activity in cells. That means it helps bones with their structure.
Partial degradation of neurons, like with Alzheimer disease, can be slowed down by vitamin K in diet. Arugula is listed as small, but valuable, prevention method for that kind of disease.
Low level of oxalate (which improve better mineral absorption) and presence of lots of minerals in this plant, make arugula very healthy for bones.
Those suffering from osteoporosis can see improvements. Arugula can be used as a prevention method.
Securing better health and strength of bones before age effects or activity effects reflect on bones, and bring further degradation.
Immune system- Arugula Nutrition
Vitamin C is found in large quantities in arugula. It therefore helps cancer prevention.
Above all it helps keep good health by adding additional power to your immune system.
Vitamin C is one of the best defenses for your body to get free from free radicals. They cause inflammation and eliminate them before causing irreversible damage.
It is full with vitamins and minerals that in some way improve immune system of your organism.
Body is stimulated to create more white blood cells.
Arugula has numerous ways to improve strength, endurance and functioning of your immune system.
Arugula consumption is good for cancer prevention because it contains a lot phytochemichals.
They are substances like thiocyanates, sulforaphane or indiols.
Studies have shown that these substances are very successful in fighting prostate, breast, ovaries cancer.
These phytochemicals that are found in large quantities in arugula prevent activity of these cancer cells.
Arugula is excellent choice for pregnant women.
Folates, which include folic acid, reduce chance of some mental defects of babies.
One more good thing about arugula is presence of vitamin B complex. They are group of 8 vitamins that support metabolism and cell health.
For instance, B vitamins participate and help all different cell activities.
Including creating energy, fat synthesis, red blood cell production and a lot more vital processes for cell and metabolic health.
Arugula has high percentage of B vitamin.
Arugula is well know source of carotenoids. Natural pigments which are known to improve eyesight.
In other words, carotenoids slow down process of macular degeneration. Macular degradation therefore results in sight loss in the center part of retina.
In most cases it causes cataract which then has to be removed. Getting more corenoids in your diet will slow down this classic aging symptom.
Arugula has very low levels of oxalate compared to other leafy vegetables. They prevent mineral absorption in organism, which is counterproductive for consuming minerals from the same plant.
Arugula doesn’t have high level of oxalate, so minerals, like copper and potassium. Which you get from plant, are much more easier absorbed and used efficiently.
Just by eating green vegetables doesn’t mean it is good for you. Therefore take special care of what you eat.
Including arugula into your diet is as same as including any low calorie plant rich in vitamins and nutrients.
For sure it will in addition have positive effects on any kind of way to lose weight.
After that arugula is perfect for keeping good health. Because arugula nutrition is high in value and low in calories.
No matter the specific taste, it is best consumed raw. In addition it keeps it’s healthy benefits even cooked.
If you are looking diets that suit you best maybe some of these will help:
Arugula Side Effects
In some cases arugula can be harmful.
It is very rich in phytoncides, which is good as they can fight bacteria and fungi easily.
However, they can also make arugula cause allergic reaction.
In addition, you shouldn’t overeat arugula also. This especially goes for people who have strong acid juice, kidney and liver problems.
Arugula Salad Recipes
Arugula for me is the best salad there is. It can be combined in so many ways. Each of them is tasteful.
This salad which is inspired by Sardinia, island on which some of the oldest people live.
This salad is full of energy and healthy ingredients.
- 4 cups of arugula
- 2 tomatoes
- 120 grams of sardine
- pinch of salt
- spoon of olive oil
- 2 spoons of lemon juice
You can add avocado if you like. Wash all ingredients, mix it together, spice it up and enjoy it healthy effects.
Arugula, Beetroot and Cheese Salad
This could be a little complicated version of salad, however it is very tasteful.
In this salad beetroot is added. You can buy it in a can.
Mix arugula, beetroot, cheese, nuts, sweet grapes and some pomegranate.
Use neutral oils for this salad. I would always recommend olive oil for this salad.
Celery And Arugula Salad
Excellent combination of vitamins.
Chop arugula, pickles and celery. Over that you can put mustard combined with olive oil and a little lemon juice.
You can always add balsamic vinegar if you like it more spicy.
Arugula, Beetroot And Mandarin Orange
As I said in the beginning of this article I love combining arugula with fruits.
Very unusual but wonderful combination.
Cut beetroot into cubes and bake it. Add it to arugula and mandarin orange. In addition put some nuts and cheese.
Spicy it up olive oil.
Health Benefits of Arugula – Conclusion
Above all arugula is one of the best vegetables for salad.
In addition to its specific taste(meaty) it also provides many health benefits.
However, maybe arugula is not for you. If you think that I suggest to give it one more shot as it can do wonders for your diet and health.
Above all this is excellent vegetable and I use is as much as I can.
I recommend that you do the same. Health benefits of arugula should not be ignored.