This dish boasts both immune system health benefits as well as anti-inflammatory actions. Four simple, but powerful ingredients olive oil, rosemary, garlic and rutabaga all work together to build health!
Read on to see how this simple snack or side dish builds great health in your kids!!
The dominant fat in olive oil is a monounsaturated fat, called oleic acid. It is this fat that linked to the anti-inflammatory properties of olive oil.
Extra virgin olive oil is a good source of antioxidants with vitamins E and K that can protect the body from oxygen-free radicals and promote healthy cognitive function, says the USDA.
This article in the Journal of Immunology Research suggests many direct immune system benefits of garlic compounds.
Whole garlic contains a compound called alliin. When garlic is crushed or chewed, allicin turns into allicin, the main active ingredient in garlic. The sulfur containing compounds in Allicin give garlic its taste and smell and medical properties.
These compounds have been shown to boost the disease-fighting response of some types of white blood cells in the body when they encounter viruses.
The way garlic is processed or prepared can really change its health benefits.
The enzyme alliinase, which converts alliin into the beneficial allicin, only works under certain conditions. It can also be deactivated by heat.
One study found that as little as 60 seconds of microwaving or 45 minutes in the oven can deactivate alliinase. But wait! There are steps we can take to minimize the loss of health benefits. Crushing garlic and allowing it to stand for 10 minutes before cooking can help prevent the loss of its medicinal properties. Loss of health benefits due to cooking could be compensated for by increasing the amount of garlic used.
Here are a few ways to maximize the health benefits of garlic:
- Crush or slice all your garlic before you eat it. This increases the allicin content.
- Before you cook with your crushed garlic, let it stand for 10 minutes.
- Use a lot of garlic — more than one clove per meal, if you can.
A rutabaga is a cross between a turnip and a cabbage. Rutabagas offer unique health benefits. Rutabaga’s most significant nutrient is Vitamin C. According to this article, one cup of rutabaga serves 53% of the daily recommended value, providing antioxidants and immune system-supporting functions that help protect the cells from free radical damage.
The vitamin C also helps to maximize absorption of the iron found in rutabaga. This helps to form both collagen and the thyroid hormone thyroxine. Collagen and thyroxine protect cells against damage, encourage wounds to heal, fight infections, and promote healthy bones, teeth, gums, and blood vessels.
Other important nutrients in rutabaga are:
potassium and manganese (energy)
thiamin and vitamin B6 (nervous system)
calcium (strong bones)
magnesium (calcium absorption and stress reduction)
phosphorus (protein and sugar metabolism)
ONTO THE RECIPE…
1 large rutabaga
1 whole bulb of garlic (Thats right, the whole thing! Read why above.)
2 small stems of fresh rosemary
1 tsp real salt
1 Tbsp olive oil
PUTTING IT TOGETHER:
- Preheat the oven to 400F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Peel and slice your rutabaga.
- Peel, crush and mince one head of garlic. Let it sit for 10 minutes before using. (read why above)
- Strip the rosemary needles from your garlic stem and mince.
- Combine the rosemary, salt and garlic in a small bowl.
- Add the sliced rutabaga and olive oil in a large bowl. Toss to coat. Then add the spices and toss to coat again.
- Bake for 40 minutes until slightly golden and crispy.
I served this for lunch alongside sardine/tuna/salmon salad with veggies, steamed green beans and fermented carrots. Oh yeah…you know that tuna salad had even more garlic in it and the fermented carrots had garlic in the fermenting jar. 🙂 The more, the better.