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Why are artichokes good for you?

and do the "hearts" have a different nutrient base than the leaves?

Wed. Dec 14, 9:14pm

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Artichoke Nutrition

I googled "artichoke nutrition" and did a copy & paste on the first article that came up. This doesn't answer all of your question, but it gives a start.

Nutrition
The ancients considered artichokes to have many benefits. Artichokes, including leaves, were thought to be an aphrodisiac, a diuretic, a breath freshener and even a deodorant. Decoctions of artichoke leaves have been used as blood cleansers, cholerics, to improve bile production and secretion and to detox the liver and the skin.

The new, to this era, information about phytochemicals contained in vegetables and fruits is confirming some of these ancient claims. Research is now underway to determine the phytochemicals in artichokes, and work continues to define the role these phytochemicals play in maintaining good health and preventing disease.

Current research is showing benefits to the liver from cynarin, a compound found in the artichoke's leaves. Silymarin is another compound found in artichokes that has powerful anitoxidant properties and may help the liver regenerate healthy tissue.

Artichokes are nutrient dense, so, for the 25 calories in a medium artichoke, you're getting 16 essential nutrients!

Artichokes provide the important minerals magnesium, chromium, manganese, potassium, phosphorus, iron and calcium. For example, that 25 calorie artichoke provides 6% of the Recommended Daily Value of phosphorus, 10% of magnesium, 8% of manganese, 10% of chromium, 5% of potassium, 4% of iron and 2% of calcium and iron.

In addition to all these important minerals, artichokes are a good source of fiber (12% of the RDV), vitamin C (10% of the RDV), and folate (10% of the RDV).

Artichokes are low in calories and sodium, have no fat and no cholesterol.

All this means that artichokes, as a part of a low-fat, high-fiber diet, can help reduce the risk of certain types of heart disease, cancers and birth defects.


If you want more information, you can follow the link below. It will bring up approximately 500,000 articles on artichoke nutrition.

Thanks for asking the question. Now I have learned something, too.

Digby

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Thursday, December 15, 2005, 1:04 PM

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Researchers have limited knowledge about why certain veggies are good for you. They just know that they are good for you. There are literally hundreds of compounds in tomatoes for example that have been identified but not researched-- all they know is that tomatoes are great for you.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007, 5:37 PM

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I love artichokes! My mother used to make them for me every year on my birthday (in May, so they are in season). She made this great hollandaise sauce with it - made with butter and I'm sure terribly fattening. But SO yummy.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007, 5:51 PM

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so does anyone know how to eat a fresh one ?? i have always wanted to try it but i have been confused on how to prepare it.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007, 7:18 PM

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guacomole

I went to Mexico and learned the best guacomole receipe (to serve about 8 people):

7 roma tomatoes
7 artichokes
1 jalepeno pepper
1/2 onion
about 1 tablespoon of fresh cilantro
1 tsp salt
1 tsp powdered chicken bullion (the secret ingredient - obviously for the MSG)
lime juice from 1/2 a lime

Wednesday, April 18, 2007, 7:49 PM

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how to eat an artichoke...

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Thursday, April 19, 2007, 9:08 AM

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What I usually do is boil them in a huge pot but with about 2 inches full of water for an hour. I do test them around 45 minutes and you can test it by peeling off a leaf and eating the blunt round part (not the pointy part by scraping it with your teeth or taking a bite out of it, whichever you prefer. I usually dip it in lemon but some people prefer butter. Butter tastes great but makes this a very fattening food. You eat each leaf as I described above and once the leaves are done, you scrape out the part with "hair" like things, and then you can eat the whole stem, mushroom like shape part of it. Writing this makes me realize I could do a much better job making a video and showing it. I might to this!

Thursday, April 19, 2007, 9:18 AM

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