What is bok choy you might ask? Boy Choy is a Chinese vegetable which has grown for centuries in China. It has also been used in Chinese medicine. The name “Bok Choy” originated from the Chinese word for “soup spoon” because of the shape of its leaves. It is a small plant that grows upright from the ground with smooth white romaine lettuce like stalks, which spread at the top to fine, glossy green, oval or round leaves. Bok choy may reach 12-18 inches in height. It is also known as leafy Chinese cabbage and is a popular winter season vegetable in China.
The health benefit of Boy Choy includes:
It is a very rich source of many vital phytonutrients, vitamins, minerals, and health-benefiting anti-oxidants.
100g of Bok Choy is only 13 calories. It is the most recommended vegetable in the weight reduction programs under “zero calorie or negative calorie” category of food items, which when eaten would add no extra calories into the body, but facilitate calorie burn and thereby reduce body weight.
As part of the Brassica family vegetables, bok choy contains lutein, zeaxanthin, sulforaphane. These compounds help protect against breast, colon and prostate cancer and help reduce LDL or “bad cholesterol” levels in the blood.
Bok choy is a very good source of Vitamin K which has a potential role in the bone metabolism, by promoting osteotrophic activity inside bone cells. Enough vitamin k in your diet makes your bone stronger, healthier and delay osteoporosis. It has been found also that vitamin k has been found to have an established role in Alzheimer’s disease patients by limiting neuronal damage in their brain.
Vitamin B complex such as pyridoxine (B6), riboflavin, B5, B1 which is essential to replenish your body. It also includes calcium, phosphorous, potassium, manganese, iron and magnesium. Potassium is very important because it helps to regulate heart rate and blood pressure. Manganese is used by the human body as a co-factor for the antioxidant enzyme, and iron is required for the red blood cells.
Bok choy is a winter season vegetable. Store the vegetable inside the refrigerator at high relative humidity. If it is stored correctly, it stays fresh for 3-4 days without losing its nutrients. It is more nutritious, sweeter and flavorful when used fresh.
To prepare, separate outer stalks from the base using a paring knife, and slice the whole vegetable in half lengthwise. Chop from the stem about an inch apart, and work towards the leafy end. Add it into a variety of recipes, either combining it with other vegetables in a bowl of soup and stir -fry, which is one of my favorite way to cook it.
I love bok choy, it is one of my favorite vegetables. If you have never tried it before, now is your chance especially if you are watching your weight.