The Amazing Artichoke

The Nutritional Profile of Artichokes

I don't know about you, but I am a big fan of artichokes. The artichoke is a superfood vegetable and a great source of prebiotics - undigestible sugars that feed the beneficial microbes in the gut and improve digestive and immune health. (1)

A medium size artichoke (cooked or raw) has only 13 grams of carbohydrates and about 60 calories, but it provides 7 grams of fiber (25% of the required daily intake), 4 grams of plant protein, as well as essential minerals like magnesium, potassium, folate and vitamin K, which are important for normal nervous system function, blood pressure, bone and heart health. (2)

Artichokes are also rich in health-promoting polyphenols and have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.(3) Research has shown over and over again that artichokes have important medicinal qualities. Most significant appears to be their beneficial effect on the liver.(4) In animal studies, ethanol (alcohol) extract from artichoke leaves was shown to significantly reduce blood glucose levels in diabetic rats as well as total cholesterol, triglycerides and low density lipoproteins (LDL), all of which are associated with an increased risk for cardiovascular disease. Moreover, the extract exerted potent anti-oxidative activity demonstrated by the increase of SOD (superoxide dismutase) and GSH (glutathione) activities in liver, kidney and pancreas of diabetic rats. (5)

Artichokes and Gut Health

Artichokes are also amazing for the integrity and hea