What are Microgreens and their Benefits?
Microgreens offer a substantial amount of benefits despite their small size. While they may seem insignificant, they're actually some of the healthiest plants out there. In this article we will be going over the many benefits microgreens have to offer, and why you should consider them as part of a healthy diet, and in supporting our sponsorship program.
Most microgreens contain anywhere from 4-40 times more nutrients than their full-grown counterparts. That is a significant difference and is one of the reasons why so many people have decided to start consuming these tiny superfoods.
What are Microgreens
Microgreens are simply smaller versions of conventional herbs and vegetables. Microgreens are essentially the same full-grown herb or vegetable but just harvested at an earlier time. For example, instead of growing a kale plant until it matures, you harvest it when it is only 8-12 days old. That is basically what a microgreen is, and instead of growing one plant, you grow hundreds of them altogether. Growing microgreens is typically done indoors where you have more control over the temperature and environment. Microgreens grow incredibly fast compared to other plants like kale, broccoli, and cauliflower. Most microgreens germinate in just 2-3 days and are then ready to grow until harvest. Most microgreens will be ready to harvest in just 10 days. Some microgreens can even be harvested as early as 5 days. Most microgreens though will not last more than 14 or 15 days before they must be harvested. The only things microgreens need to thrive are water and light. Provide those two things and you can grow microgreens anywhere all year round.
Brassica Microgreens such as Arugula, Kale, Broccoli, Radish, Kohlrabi, Watercress, Red Cabbage, and Cauliflower all contain Sulforaphane, which was found in one study to stop the tumor growths of breast cancer. The consumption of Brassica microgreens has also been associated with a reduced risk of the development of colorectal, stomach, pancreatic, lung, breast, and ovarian cancer.
Support Cardiovascular Health
One of the major causes of cardiac diseases is oxidative stress. Studies suggest that sulforaphane contains anti-inflammatory properties that activate a protein known as Nrf2 which serves as a defense mechanism against oxidative stress.
Sulforaphane was also found in one study to reduce blood glucose levels in patients with type 2 diabetes. Sulforaphane was identified to suppress glucose production from hepatic cells and may reverse the disease.
Sulforaphane also activates heat-shock proteins in the body, which help slow aging and improve brain function. Studies from the National Academy for the Sciences show Sulforaphane protects your cells from cellular damage which is most commonly found in UV light.
Boost Brain Function
Sulforaphane is also really good for your brain and is considered a brain-boosting substance. Studies show that this compound reduced depressive symptoms and anxiety.
Strengthen The Immune System
Vitamin C is an essential nutrient for a strong immune system, and 100 grams of microgreens provide more than half of your daily vitamin C needs. Research has shown that not getting enough vitamin C can weaken your immune system and make you more susceptible to getting sick.
Protect Your Eyes
Microgreens such as mustard, kale, arugula, basil, beetroot, and pea shoots all contain significant amounts of lutein and zeaxanthin which have been known to protect your eyes from macular degeneration and light damage.
Your brain needs oxygen to function properly and the iron present in most microgreens helps deliver oxygen to the brain. By eating iron-rich diets you will lower your chances of developing Alzheimer's and dementia.
Protects Your Bones
Vitamin K is essential for bone health, and microgreens contain a lot of it. A lack of vitamin K has been associated with an increased risk of fractures and reduced bone strength.
Aid in Weight Loss
Microgreens contain two of the most important nutrients when it comes to losing weight, protein, and fiber. Microgreens are mostly made up of water and have very few calories, which also helps when losing weight.
Anemia is a condition in which you lack enough healthy red blood cells to carry adequate oxygen to your body's tissues, which can make you feel tired and weak without you even knowing what caused it. Microgreens contain significant amounts of iron, which helps carry oxygen to your body tissues and prevents anemia.
Fight Off Diseases
Microgreens are rich in many disease-fighting antioxidants that play a vital role in protecting your cells from free radicals that cause oxidative stress. Research has shown that free radicals can cause heart disease, Alzheimer's, and even cancer.
Microgreens contain vitamin C and B which are crucial for promoting the absorption of iron, which helps turn food into energy. These prebiotic fibers promote the growth of gut microbes which help digest food.
Protect You Against Diabetes
Microgreens have an incredibly important mineral that most people don't get enough of, magnesium, which helps protect the body against type 2 diabetes.
Cleanse Your Blood
Research has determined that microgreens possess the capability to improve liver function and more effectively clean the blood, hence placing less stress on your circulatory and immune systems.
The antioxidants found in microgreens were also found to have an anti-inflammatory effect. Reducing inflammation in people with various diseases such as autoimmune disease, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and even certain cancers.
Microgreens have many health benefits and are even more beneficial to grow rather than growing a herb or vegetable to full maturity. I recommend you start adding them to your diet considering how many health benefits they have. Microgreens are some of the best superfoods.