We've all heard that kale is a superfood – but is this actually true?  With increasing attention focused back on Americans' health with recent spikes of cancer and other disease cases partly connected to what we eat, it's tempting to scramble to get your hands on anything called a "superfood." These foods are quite heroic after all – they provide vital vitamins and minerals, antioxidants, and even cancer-fighting nutrients. So, is kale a superfood? The answer is yes. With all the benefits it can give the human body, the only thing it needs is a cape to complete the superhero look.


broccoli, vegetable, kale, cabbage
Kayla Bernstein

Kale is packed with vitamins, including vitamins A, B6, C and K. Vitamins are important for your body to have, especially because most of them our bodies cannot make on their own. Vitamin A is good for eyesight and skin as well as protects your body against lung and oral cavity cancers. It is also good for urinary health, protecting against bladder cancer. Vitamin B6 is essential for maintaining a healthy nervous system and in aiding metabolic processes. Vitamin C is also good for metabolism and is also an essential support for your immune system. Vitamin K is what's really special though – this stuff will protect against various cancers, helps with bodily functions like blood clotting and normal body functions like bone health. It is also good for the brain, as it can help people with Alzheimer's disease.

Antioxidants, Anti-Cancer, and Anti-Aging

vegetable, cabbage, broccoli, kale
Katherine Luo

Kale has several antioxidants, including vitamin C, carotenoids, and flavonoids. Antioxidants are important because they help support a healthy immune system, which helps you fight off disease. Carotenoids and flavonoids are important because they protect against cancer. Carotenoids and flavonoids actually contribute to the dark green color of most vegetables, so you can tell that kale is full of them because of their dark green color. And as if this weren't enough, antioxidants even give an anti-aging effect by treating the skin. They prevent loss of skin elasticity so your skin looks supple, soft, and wrinkle-free.

#SpoonTip when shopping for vegetables, always go for the greener ones! They are more likely to have antioxidants like carotenoids and flavonoids because these are what make up their color. This is what makes even romaine lettuce healthier than iceberg lettuce. Even tomatoes get their red color from lycopene, an antioxidant that protects against breast and prostate cancer.

Kale To The Rescue

kale, salad, chili
Kate Donald

Kale has it all, so it can tackle many problems your body may have. The vitamins it has helps upkeep the daily functions of your body, and antioxidants give kale the power to fight its enemies by protecting your body. In addition to these incredible benefits, kale is also rich in calcium (more per calorie than milk), magnesium, potassium, iron (more per calorie than beef), and fiber. Collectively, these nutrients provide your body with all kinds of support and protection, including prevention from osteoporosis, arthritis, and heart disease, and support for cell growth, a healthy metabolism, and detoxing your body of harmful toxins. 

We can finally put the question, "is kale a superfood" to rest. It most definitely is. Most of the nutrients found in kale can be found in other foods, but what makes kale stand out above the rest is the abundance of these ingredients in kale. You can get an antioxidants, anti-cancer, anti-aging tonics and essential vitamins all in a little leaf! When your body needs health, kale is here to save the day.

Almost the best part about kale is the versatility it has in meals. You can make salads, like this yummy summer kale and watermelon salad, or crisp up some kale chips with a little olive oil, salt and pepper for a healthy snack. Most people don't prefer the taste of kale, but there are plenty of ways you can make it flavorful and add more nutrients to your meal.