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8 Benefits Of Kale That Will Surprise You (+Healthy Recipes)

8 Benefits Of Kale That Will Surprise You (+Healthy Recipes)

From t-shirts exclaiming “Kale Yeah!” to Brooklyn brunch menus offering eclectic kale frittatas, this super food has come a long way in the past decade. The hipster-hype surrounding kale has given this cruciferous vegetable the popularity needed to charm its way into smoothies, juices, salads, and the hearts of veg-heads everywhere. Aside from being a socially endorsed food, kale also has a long list of health benefits. Read on to learn about how the many benefits of kale can invigorate your health.

1. Kale helps with weight loss

If there’s one food you should add to your diet in preparation for swimsuit season, it’s kale. Despite being low in calories, kale is rich in your body’s favorite nutrients, like Vitamin A, Vitamin B6, and Potassium (to name a few). These vitamins maintain your body’s internal composition, giving you cleaner energy and a balanced appetite.

Kale also contains protein and fiber—two very necessary nutrients for weight loss. Adding kale into your diet can increase volume without compromising calorie intake, making you feel fuller on less food.

Calcium is another nutrient that’s present in kale, which is great since calcium has been linked to considerable fat burning in several studies. Next time you go to pack your lunch, try swapping out the potato chips for some kale chips.

2. Kale helps with vision

You’ve probably been told that eating your vegetables is good for your eyesight, but is it actually true? It is for kale. The vegetable is loaded with lutein and zeaxanthin, two notorious defenders of ocular health. Incorporating kale into your diet can significantly lower your risk of developing age-related eye disorders while also preserving the quality of your vision. Hold the cataracts and bifocals—more kale, please.

3. Kale has tons of vitamins

Because of the way many foods are processed, frozen, and cooked, many minerals and vitamins get filtered out. As a result, most people have a deficiency of at least one vitamin, if not several vitamins. Kale is an excellent source of these vitamins, containing well beyond the recommended daily amount in Vitamin K, Vitamin A, and Vitamin C.

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It’s also a great source of calcium, magnesium, and several other nutrients our body needs. When you’re consuming a sufficient amount of these nutrients, your immune system is stronger and your body performs better. Instead of taking a handful of vitamins everyday, just eat kale on a regular basis (it’s cheaper than buying those vitamins!).

4. Kale contains cancer-fighting agents

In an age where almost every product and food is somehow linked to cancer, how can we protect ourselves from getting sick? One of the best things we can do is consume a diet that makes our bodies inhospitable for cancer. Such a diet might include low pesticide fruits, low hormone meat, and kale, kale, kale.

This superfood is packed with compounds, such as sulforaphane, that fight cancer at the earliest molecular level. Many of the same cancer-fighting agents are also found in other vegetables from the cabbage family, including broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and cauliflower. Including one of these vegetables in a meal 4–5 times each week will work to improve your health and prevent future sickness.

5. Kale naturally detoxes your body

If you’ve ever been interested in doing a detox program, you probably know how expensive they can be. Instead of spending hundreds of dollars on a chemical detox, try eating a large amount of kale for a couple of weeks. Perhaps one of the most compelling benefits of kale is how it detoxes cells within the body. We’re constantly coming in contact with toxins through both our food and our environments, and our body has a natural detoxing process that breaks up and flushes those toxins out.

The high sulfur content in kale as well as the isothiocyanates (ITCs) made from kale’s glucosinolates support that detox regulation function of cells within our body. By boosting your kale intake, you can naturally “rev up” your body’s detox response naturally while flushing out toxins.

6. Kale helps lower cholesterol

One of the main functions of cholesterol within the body is creating bile acids. These help us digest fats after we splurge on that greasy burger or pizza, and our body reuses the bile acids after all the fat from a meal has been absorbed. These bile acids are performing a digestive function and absorbing the fat, but after the bile acids have done their job, they’re returned into the bloodstream, making the cholesterol level within the body rise (this is one reason why a fatty diet leads to high cholesterol).

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Kale has a high number of bile acid sequestrants, which keep the bile acids in the digestive system rather than getting reabsorbed into the bloodstream. This means that eating more kale will result in more bile acid sequestrants to bind the bile acids, which will then result in lower cholesterol over time. Hooray!

7. Kale makes you pretty

Want to achieve that natural glow? Try adding kale into your daily diet—it’ll boost and brighten your appearance from the inside out. Kale is extremely high in beta-carotene, which the body converts into Vitamin A. This fuels the production of bodily tissues and sebum, which replenish old cells and keep new ones hydrated.

The end result? Beautiful hair, clear and hydrated skin, and strong nails without having to break the bank on expensive vitamins.

8. Kale is easy to cook with

If you’re new to kale, you’re probably not thrilled at the thought of eating a cold, crunchy leaf. The good news is that kale has incredible cooking versatility! It can be incorporated into nearly every dish, contributes a non-intrusive but full flavor, and is sure to satisfy your hunger.

Enjoy the benefits of kale while tickling your taste buds with one of these easy recipes.

Kale Smoothie with Pineapple

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    Kickstart your day in 5 minutes with this tasty and simple smoothie! The kale in this recipe will provide the fuel you need to make it to lunchtime while satisfying all your taste buds.

    Kale, Potato, and Onion Frittata

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      With less than 150 calories per serving, you can have a guilt-free brunch and go for that second mimosa. Host brunch at your house next weekend and try this easy and delicious recipe!

      Kale Ricotta Dip

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        You’ve heard of spinach artichoke dip, but have you tried kale ricotta dip? You can have just as much flavor and less than half the calories with this recipe. Grab some pita chips and say hello to your new favorite appetizer.

        Sausage Pizza topped with Crispy Kale

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          The easiest fancy pizza you’ll ever make. This dish is as aesthetically pleasing as it is delicious-eating your vegetables never looked so good.

          Kale and Pink Grapefruit Salad

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            This refreshing citrus and kale salad will invigorate your work day. It’s satisfying and simple, and you can make it your own by adding your favorite toppings or pairing it with a side of toast.

            Image Credits: Kale Smoothie, Citrus via Pixabay; Kale Frittata via John Valiant; Kale Dip via Popsugar Photography, Leta Shy; Kale Pizza via Kelli Foster

            Featured photo credit: Kale Varieties via pixabay.com

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            Last Updated on October 23, 2019

            50 Habits of Highly Successful People You Should Learn

            50 Habits of Highly Successful People You Should Learn

            If you’re like me and really into self-development, you’ve probably read many of the thousands of self-help books out there on the market. But also like me, you probably find all the information a bit overwhelming.

            That’s why I wanted to do the self-less task of taking the most important, life-changing lessons I’ve drawn from these books and condensed them into fifty key points.

            Here’re 50 habits of highly successful people you should learn:

            1. Believe It to See It

            Our minds tend to focus on what’s happening around us and refuse to see what could happen. Only when you trust in what’s possible and dare to dream big, big things can happen for you.

            2. See Problems as a Wonderful Gift

            While others only see problems and give up, successful people use the problem as a lesson to find improvement in themselves or the task at hand.

            3. Keep Looking for Solutions

            Even if they’re knee-deep in problems, successful people will still put all of their focus on finding solutions.

            4. Remember It’s All About the Journey

            Successful people are conscious and methodical in creating their own success. They don’t sit around doing the bare minimum, hoping success finds them.

            5. Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway

            There’s so much fear on the road to success, but instead of letting that fear control and limit them, successful people do a good job of just forging ahead regardless.

            6. Always Ask Productive Questions

            It’s all about asking the right questions. Successful people make sure they are questions that will elicit information for a more productive, creative and positive mindset moving forward.

            7. Understand the Best Waste of Energy Is Complaining

            Successful people know that choosing to see the negative side of things will only create a useless and unproductive state.

            8. Don’t Play the Blame Game

            Taking responsibility for actions and outcomes is a form of empowerment that you can build your success upon. While the act of blaming others or outside circumstances takes this empowerment away from you.

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            9. Maximize Your Strengths

            Not every successful person is simply more talented than the rest, but they do use what they know they’re good at to achieve more successful results.

            10. Be in It to Win It

            Successful people are busy, productive and proactive. Instead of sitting around over-thinking and over-planning a great idea, they just take a step towards it no matter how small.

            11. Know That Success Attracts Success

            People who are successful surround themselves and seek out like-minded people. They understand the importance of being part of a team and forge win-win relationships.

            12. Actually Choose to Be Successful

            Dreaming big is a massive part of being successful even if your dream seems impossible. Ambition is a mindset that needs to be a daily conscious choice.

            13. Visualize, Visualize, Visualize!

            You’ve got to see your success in your mind’s eye even before it comes. Successful people clarify and get that certainty about what they want their reality to look like rather than being mere spectators of life.

            14. Be a One-Off Original

            Successful people look for what’s working and then create a unique spin on it. Imitating only regurgitates other people’s ideas with no originality.

            15. The Perfect Time to Act Is Now

            Waiting for the right time to act is basically procrastination wrapped up in an excuse. Successful people know there’s never a perfect time so they may as well just do it now.

            16. Keep Learning, Keep Growing

            Continuous learning is the key to a successful life. Whether it’s academic, being a student of life or actionable learning, it’s all about expanding your knowledge and personal development.

            17. Always Look on the Bright Side of Life

            Successful people have the knack for finding positive aspects in all people and circumstances no matter what.

            18. Having a Bad Day? Do It Anyway!

            We all have bad moods but it shouldn’t be an excuse to stop everything. Giving into a bad mood just stop-starts your life, slowing success way down.

            19. Sometimes Risky Business Is Needed

            Calculated risks are a must for success. It’s about weighing the pros and cons while moving forward with that element of trust.

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            20. Accept Challenge All the Time

            Dealing with problems head-on is a must to be successful. Successful people also face challenges in order to improve themselves.

            21. Make Your Own Luck

            In the mindset of a successful person, there’s no such thing as ‘luck’ or ‘fate’. They take control to actively and consciously create their own best life.

            22. Ignite Your Initiative

            While many people are reactive, successful people are proactive – taking action before they have to.

            23. Be the Master of Your Emotions

            Being effective at managing emotions is key on the road to success. That’s not to say successful people don’t feel like we all do, but they’re just not slaves to their emotions.

            24. Champion in Communication

            Consciously working on effective communication skills gets anyone closer to success.

            25. Plan Your Life Strategically

            Successful people’s lives aren’t a clumsy series of unplanned events and outcomes, they methodically work at turning their plans into a reality.

            26. Become Exceptional at What You Do

            To become exceptional, you typically have to do things that most won’t. To become successful, hard decisions need to be made and acting on them is crucial.

            27. Choose to Live Outside of Your Comfort Zone

            While many people are pleasure junkies and avoid pain and discomfort at all costs, successful people understand the value and benefits of working through the tough stuff that most would avoid.

            28. Live by Core Values

            Successful people firstly identify their core values and what’s important to them, then do their best to live a life that reflects these values.

            29. Realize Money Isn’t Everything

            Money and success are not interchangeable and the most successful people understand this. Putting money on a pedestal and equating it to success is a dangerous mindset to have. Success comes in many forms.

            30. Don’t Get Carried Away

            Successful people understand the importance of discipline and self-control and as a result they are happy to take the road less travelled.

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            31. Self-Worth Is Not Tied to Success

            Successful people are secure. They do not derive their self-worth from what they own, who they know, where they live or what they look like.

            32. Kindness Breeds Kindness (And Success)

            Generosity and kindness is a common trait among long-term successful people. It’s important to take pleasure in helping others achieve.

            33. More Humility, Less Arrogance

            Successful people are humble and happy to admit and apologize for mistakes. This is because they’re confident in their ability. They are happy to learn from others and happy to make others look good rather than seek their own personal glory.

            34. Change Opens New Doors

            People who are successful are adaptable and embrace change, while the majority are creatures of comfort and habit. They are comfortable with, and embrace, the new and the unfamiliar.

            35. Success Requires a Healthy Body

            It’s not just how you think, it’s about how you show up for success. Successful people understand the importance of being physically well, not for vain reasons but because being in tiptop condition creates a better personal life for success.

            36. Laziness Just Doesn’t Exist

            Successful people are never considered lazy. Yes, they can relax when they need to, but working hard is their game.

            37. Resilience by the Bucket Load

            When difficulty strikes, most would throw in the towel, but successful people are just warming up.

            38. Feedback Is Just Another Chance to Improve

            How people react to feedback determines their potential for success. Being open to constructive criticism and acting on it to improve is most seen in those who are successful.

            39. Your Vibe Attracts Your Tribe

            If people are hanging out with toxic and negative people, then they need to take a look at themselves. Successful people hang out with others who are positive and supportive.

            40. Can’t Control It? Forget It

            Successful people don’t invest time or emotional energy into things which they have no control of.

            41. Swim Against the Tide

            Successful people are not people-pleasers and they don’t need constant approval from others in order to move ahead.

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            42. Alone Time Is Valuable Time

            More self-worth means being more comfortable with your own company. Successful people are more happy and see the value in spending time alone.

            43. Self-Standard Is Higher Than Most

            Everyone has a choice to set high standards for themselves. Successful people do this, which in turn produces greater commitment, more momentum, a better work ethic and of course, better results.

            44. Failure Isn’t Rationalized

            While many use age, health, lack of time, ‘bad luck’, or lack of opportunity to explain away their failure, the key to success is finding a way to succeed despite facing these challenges.

            45. Down Time Is an Important Part of a Routine

            Having an off switch and taking time to do things that make them happy is a common trait of a successful person. Take a look at here The Importance of Scheduling Downtime.

            46. Career Isn’t Who You Are, It’s What You Do

            Successful people know their career isn’t their identity. They are multi-dimensional and don’t define themselves by their job.

            47. Be Interested in Only the Path of Resistance

            While most people look for the easiest way or the shortcut, successful people are more interested in the most effective way. They look for the course of action which will produce the best results over the long term.

            48. Follow Through

            Many spend their life starting things that they never finish, but successful people get the job done. Even when the excitement and the novelty has worn off they still follow through and finish.

            49. Invest in All Your Dimensions

            We’re not just physical and psychological beings, but emotional and spiritual creatures as well. Successful people consciously work at being healthy and productive on all levels.

            50. Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is

            To obtain success, it’s important to practice what you preach. Successful people don’t talk about the theory, they live the reality.

            So there you have it, a summary of what I’ve learned from self-help books. But of course, you need to start taking actions so you will get closer to success too.

            More About Success

            Featured photo credit: Juan Jose via unsplash.com

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