Nutrition & Lifestyle Coach Charlotte Lau explores the benefits of incorporating another healthy ingredient into our diets. This month it’s kale

Loaded with important micronutrients and antioxidants, kale is one of the most nutritious leafy greens available. It is abundant and flavoursome in the winter months, with a nutty taste, earthy flavour and it works well in a wide range of recipes. Add it to soups and salads, your energising morning smoothie or (my favourite) drizzle with olive oil, crisp it in the oven and enjoy it as a crunchy snack.
Kale is a cruciferous vegetable and like other dark green, leafy vegetables, it is high in antioxidants, which help to counteract oxidative damage. Kale also contains four times the vitamin C content and twice the selenium content of spinach, as well as nutrients like Vitamin E and beta-carotene, which are all important for supporting a healthy immune system, especially at this time of year.
Kale is also an excellent source of vitamin K which is important for blood clotting. A single raw cup contains almost 70% of the recommended daily amount.

Immune supporting kale soup

Boost your daily vegetable and vitamin intake with this warming soup that’s perfect for winter Serves 4

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 leek, diced
  • 200g kale, shredded
  • 2 celery sticks, diced
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 2 litres of vegetable stock
  • 1 x 400g tin of cannelloni beans (or mixed beans)
  • 1 tsp of dried oregano
  • salt and pepper
  1. Heat the oil in a large pan and add the onions and leek and stir for 5 minutes, until soft.
  2. Add the carrots, celery, beans, kale and oregano and stir.
  3. Pour in the vegetable stock and cover, simmering over a gentle heat for 45 minutes.
  4. Serve as it is for a chunkier soup, of blitz in a blender if you prefer it smooth.

Charlotte runs Plume Nutrition, where she offers support and advice for weight management, controlling cravings, sleeplessness, stress and increasing energy levels. Find out more at plumenutrition.com

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