Arugula also known as Salad Rocket, which is a fitting name for this zippy leafy green, Arugula is a delicious early summer vegetable belonging to the Brassicaceae family. Arugula is a fantastic food to add to the diet this time of year while it’s young, tender and locally in season. Like spinach it is a versatile green too. It is a rich source of certain phytochemicals that have been shown to combat cancer-causing elements in the body. Arugula is also a great source of folic acid and vitamins A, C and K. As one of the best vegetable sources of Vitamin K, arugula provides a boost for bone and brain health.
It is known for its pungent, peppery flavour that is exceptionally strong for a leafy green. Arugula contains beta carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin, all of which are being studied for their role as antioxidants or in the prevention of diseases like cancer and macular degeneration. Eating leafy greens like arugula, spinach, beet greens, Swiss chard and kale is a great way to make sure you get a healthy range of carotenoids.
Arugula is low in Saturated Fat, and very low in Cholesterol. It is also a good source of Protein, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Vitamin B6, Pantothenic Acid, Zinc and Copper, and a very good source of Dietary Fiber, Folate, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium and Manganese, a vegetable that is good for health and protects against a host of diseases.
Vitamin K has potential role bone health by promoting osteotrophic (bone formation and strengthening) activity. Adequate vitamin-K levels in the diet help limiting neuronal damage in the brain; thus, has established role in the treatment of patients suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. Vitamin K also plays a role in the prevention of heart disease. Plaque that forms inside the linings of the arteries can be partly related to calcium that is not taken up by the bones and teeth. This important vitamin can also help to keep this calcium going to the bones where it belongs!
Arugula, if consumed even in the quantity equal to a cup on a daily basis, can give some good benefits to a pregnant woman. Its folic acid content helps prevent neural tube defects in the baby. Arugula is grown in the Mediterranean region and was also thought to be an aphrodisiac.