Rutabagas: The Ultimate Winter Veggie

Rutabagas: The Ultimate Winter Veggie

Some of the world’s healthiest foods are those that don’t get a lot of attention. One such food is the rutabaga, also known as “swede” in other countries, and it should be given some of your attention as it offers many health benefits.

Rutabagas are root vegetables that look similar to turnips but taste sweeter and are much larger in size. They have been used for centuries as herbal medicine and their roots, leaves and seeds were used to treat a number of ailments. In modern times they continue to be an important part of folk medicine and are lauded for their health-promoting effects.

Here are just a few of the benefits rutabagas provide:

1. Rutabagas are very low in calories, only 56 per cup, and provide plenty of fiber with 4 grams per cup. Fiber is essential for good digestive health, weight management and it helps reduce cholesterol levels.

2. Rutabagas contain high levels of potassium which aids in muscle function, electrolyte balance and blood pressure regulation making them a good choice for athletes or people involved in physical activities who lose large amounts of potassium through perspiration.

3. Rutabagas may help prevent cancer. Rutabagas contain glucosinolates, which are compounds found in cruciferous vegetables that have been associated with a reduced risk of cancer. 

4. Loaded with nutrients: Rutabaga is an excellent source of potassium and vitamin C, which play major roles in maintaining proper fluid balance and strong immunity, respectively. 


So how do you use this delicious vegetable? Rutabagas can be boiled or roasted on their own as a side dish (and make sure to save those peels — they make an excellent cracker), but they’re also great in mashed potato dishes or casseroles. Similarly to potatoes, they absorb flavors really well and make an excellent base for other ingredients.

Anna Daniels

Anna is an avid blogger with an educational background in medicine and mental health. She is a generalist with many other interests including nutrition, women's health, astronomy and photography. In her free time from work and writing, Anna enjoys nature walks, reading, and listening to jazz and classical music.

Post Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.