Health benefits of artichokes come with fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K1, folate, magnesium, potassium, iron, and copper. Artichokes also have phytonutrients called inulin. Inulin is a prebiotic that promotes proper nutrients absorption. We can absorb it from the fiber content of artichoke.
Health benefits of artichokes come with the right amount of fiber. How many fibers can we get from a single artichoke? A medium-sized artichoke has 6.9 grams of fiber approximately. With this much fiber, it has a significant impact in weight loss program.
Aside from fiber, we can get an adequate amount of antioxidants and vitamin C. These two nutrients are useful for treating damage cells causing cancer tumors and other significant diseases.
Also, we can have cynarin in artichoke. Cynarin is responsible for the promotion of bile production in the liver. Bile is essential in digestion and absorption of nutrients as well. The sugar compound in artichoke can be identified as ‘fructooligosaccharides’ or oligofructose. This natural sweetener slows downs appetite which makes us less hungry. It is another excellent opportunity for us to be fit and healthy at the same time.
All about Artichoke and its health benefits
Before going into details of artichoke nutritional value, let us go through with the history of artichoke; how can we grow artichoke; and what are the artichoke varieties.
Artichoke came from the earliest civilization in the Greek and Roman era. It was considered as one of the oldest vegetables. The first recorded place where artichoke was cultivated is in Naples around the 9th century CE. Then, it followed by Muslim Spain and Maghreb regions in Northwest Africa. In the 15th and 16th centuries, Italy and France started to produce artichokes. Lastly, around the 19th century, French introduced artichokes to the United States.
The word ‘artichoke’ has a long history of how we came up with the name. Sometime in the 1530s, artichoke got the first name ‘articiocco’ followed by ‘arcicioffo’ of Italy and ‘alcarchofa’ from Old Spain. Later on, Arabic people have called this vegetable ‘artichoke’ or a plant with a big stump mass on the top. The term ‘choke’ has no relation to any botanical or biological term. The term evolved from Italy, ciocco, which means stump. The word ‘arti’ is an old prefix, which means high. And with that, we now call this beautiful plant—artichoke.
So, how can we grow artichoke?
Artichoke is a versatile vegetable if you plan to grow them. It does not need extra care as long as the farm area has full sunlight. You also need to have enough irrigation that will keep the soil moist all the time.
There are three methods in planting artichokes. You can plant it using the seeds, roots, and even the shoots. The most straightforward procedure is to plant the artichoke through the root method. Just place the root in the soil with some spacing of about 1.5 meters apart from each root. Growing artichokes needs a lot of space. It becomes about 2 meters high, and the leaves can produce approximately 80 cm long. The full-grown buds of the flowers have a diameter up to 15 cm. It will take six months before its maturity. Once it was full-grown, you can harvest artichoke up to 30 times in one season.
The best farm condition for artichoke should have mild winters and cool summers. Therefore, the top producing countries of artichokes are Egypt, Italy, and Spain. Then, Peru and California-USA followed to sustain the growing demand for artichokes.