Radishes are a spring of potassium – the mineral which counters the effects of sodium!
Potassium helps lower high blood pressure that may be caused by high sodium intake. The reason is that its effects are opposite of those of sodium ― salt, which is sodium based, increases water retention, while potassium is a diuretic that flushes water from the body. The DASH Diet (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) recommends increasing potassium, calcium, and magnesium to keep blood pressure at healthy levels. Salt restriction, alcohol moderation, weight loss, exercise, and a DASH diet can achieve decreases in systolic blood pressure of approximately 10 to 15 mm Hg when applied together.
However, most American adults don’t get enough potassium in their diets. The numbers are even worse for teenagers, with 97 percent of 14- to 18-year-olds failing to eat enough potassium daily. Regularly including potassium-containing foods such as radishes into meals can help reach the amount of potassium needed to stay healthy.
Why radishes? This unassuming root vegetable is such a rich source of potassium that a 100 gram serving of the root provides about 230 mg of potassium. Radishes are high in vitamin C – and the leaves contain close to six times as much as the root! They’re a cruciferous vegetable, so are believed to have anti-cancer properties. They are also high in calcium, low on the glycemic index and are a negative calorie food. This means you burn more calories digesting them than they contain.
Most people enjoy radishes raw as an addition to salads, sandwiches, and veggie and dip platters. They can also be lightly sautéed, added to soup, or juiced and added to smoothies. Matching this recipe with say grilled chicken breast, is a great way to include radishes in a main a meal.
Grilled Radish (Serves 6)
- 20 ounces radishes, sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
- 1 cube ice
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat the grill for high heat.
- Place radishes, garlic, butter, and ice cube on a double layer of aluminum foil large enough to wrap contents. Season with salt and pepper. Tightly seal foil around contents.
- Place foil packet on the grill and cook 20 minutes, or until radishes are tender.