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Rutabaga Health Benefits, Nutritional Value and Uses

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What is Rutabaga?

Rutabagas are only called rutabagas in the U.S. Throughout the rest of the world, they’re known as swedes. they are members of the cabbage family, rutabagas are often confused with turnips, although there are noticeable differences. Rutabagas are larger, part white and part purple, with creamy orange flesh and ribs near the stem, and with a sweet flavor when roasted. Meanwhile, turnips are white with a purple-red top and a peppery taste. Perpetuating the confusion, other names for the rutabaga include Swedish turnip and Russian turnip.

Health Benefits of Rutabaga


Help fight cancer: Rutabagas contain the sulfur-containing antioxidant glucosinolates, which has shown to reduce the growth of cancerous tumors. Also, rutabagas contain carotenoids and vitamin C to fight free radicals that prevent the mutation of healthy cells.

Improve immune system: One serving of rutabagas possesses 53 percent of vitamin C. Vitamin C could stimulate the immune system to produce white blood cells.

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Improve digestive health: The rutabaga contains a sufficient amount of fiber. A one-cup serving of rutabagas contains 3 grams of dietary fiber. The daily recommended dietary fiber intake for men and women are 38 grams and 25 grams, respectively. Fiber can help prevent constipation, making one’s bowel movement more regular.

Prevent premature aging: Rutabagas are effective in fighting free radicals. This has the potential in preventing premature aging, improving eyesight, and stimulating healthy regeneration of cells throughout the organs and tissues.

Fight high blood pressure: Rutabagas are high in potassium and low in sodium, which lowers blood pressure. One cup of rutabagas contains 554 milligrams of potassium compared to 34 milligrams of sodium.

Weight loss: Low calorie, nutrient rich foods like rutabagas are efficient weight loss diet plans. High-fiber foods also offer the metabolism and assist manage body weight. One cup of rutabaga contains only 66 calories.

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Improved enzymatic function: Rutabagas provide a supply of zinc, an important mineral which for a variety of enzymes. The mineral tends to help strengthen each protein’s overall structure and help support its activity.

Uses of Rutabaga

Rutabaga can be eaten raw, cooking rutabaga will make you enjoy this root vegetable more. When cooked, it releases a sweet yet savory flavor – like a rich golden potato, but less starchy and more satisfying.


Remove the outer skin of Rutabaga using a paring knife. Lay each piece flat and cut into cubes.

Use the peeled rutabaga cubes in your recipes. Make sure to check them frequently as they cook, as they may overcook and disintegrate. Try these methods to cook rutabaga:

Baking: Place the sliced or diced rutabaga in a shallow baking dish, sprinkle with a few tablespoons of water and bake in the oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit (176.6 degrees Celsius) for an hour or until tender. 

Stir-fry: Sautee the diced rutabaga (or cut them into strips) in coconut oil for about seven minutes.

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Boiling: Put the rutabaga pieces in a pot of boiling water with a small amount of stevia or honey to taste. Cooking time is approximately 10 minutes.

Mashing: Fill a pot with water, put in the rutabagas and a bit of salt and let it boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 40 minutes. Once cooked, drain the chunks and use a potato masher to mash them evenly. Add a pinch of nutmeg or cinnamon or a few tablespoons of raw butter to taste.

Nutritional value of Rutabaga

This food is very low in Saturated Fat and Cholesterol. It is also a good source of Thiamin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Calcium, Magnesium and Phosphorus, and a very good source of Dietary Fiber, Vitamin C, Potassium and Manganese.