Radishes are edible root vegetables that are either cylindrical or round in shape, with colors ranging from white to red. Newly harvested radishes have a sweet and slightly spicy flavor, while those that have been kept in storage have a bitter tang. The characteristic spicy and bitter taste is perhaps the reason radishes aren’t as popular as other salad or pickling vegetables like cucumbers, for instance. But while packed with goodness, eating these edible roots in moderation is still recommended for a number of reasons.
Read further and discover more about the pros and cons of radishes and why the Superhuman Food Pyramid recommends moderate use of these vegetables.
Radishes belong to the Brassica family of vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and mustard greens. And much like these vegetables, radishes too contain the potent antioxidant sulforaphane which protect the liver from oxidative stress. Radishes also have hexane which in an India-based study was discovered to have cancer-protective properties that induce cancer cell death as well as inhibit the spread of malignant cells.
Radishes protect against toxins, specifically zearalenone (zen) as well. Zen is present in corn, oats and barley and can therefore be found in processed food items for humans like breads and cereals, and manufactured feeds for animals. Zen has been found to cause birth defects in animals. In humans, zen causes hyperestrogenism, symptoms of which are lowered libido, sore nipples and enlargement of breast tissues in men. Some manifestations of hyperestrogenism in women, on the other hand, are irregular menstruation, ankle bloating, breast pain, and having thick cervical or vaginal discharge.
Zen isn’t the only toxin that radishes can protect us from. In a study conducted in China, it was found that the extract of these root vegetables guard against the harmful effects of a variety of hydroperoxides by scavenging and providing protection against oxidative stress brought about by said toxins.
Radishes contain antifungal proteins, too, that were particularly efficient at targeting Candida albicans, a type of fungus which causes genital and oral infections in humans. Candida albicans continues to be one of the emerging causes of death in immunocompromised individuals like those with cancer or AIDS, and radish extracts show potential for alternative approaches to treating said causal agent.
Radishes are classified as a goitrogenic food, and too much consumption of radishes, especially if you have impaired thyroid function, may result in further aggravation of the condition. Individuals with thyroid problems must make sure to consult their doctors prior to including radishes in their diet.
Radishes, much like other crops like squash, happen to be efficient at absorbing heavy metals like nickel and the highly toxic cadmium from the soil via its roots. These heavy metals cause damage to the kidneys, lungs, heart, as well as liver.
Radishes’ Practical Uses:
Always go for organically grown radishes whenever they are available to minimize your exposure to heavy metals. These root vegetables, though now widely cultivated and therefore available throughout the year, are far superior in taste and in nutrition when in season from April to June and October to January.
The tender roots and greens are both edible and can be added to your usual vegetable salad recipe. If you’re buying radishes in bulk during these vegetables’ harvest season, you can always prepare them as naturally fermented pickles in brine or vinegar, and store in sterilized glass jars for extended shelf life.
In the next post, I’ll tell you the negative effects of canned vegetables and why you should avoid them to succeed in your quest to Become Superhuman.
In the meantime, if you care to jump ahead, here is a complete listing of the vegetables on Superhuman Food Pyramid:
• Bok Choy
Also avoid if autoimmune disease or nightshade sensitivity:
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