Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Rutabaga Nutritional info & Health Benefits

Rutabaga is a bulbous root veggie that bears a resemblance to turnip, but originated much more lately than the turnip. It is believed that rutabaga is a hybrid of the wild cabbage and turnip. This hearty root veggie is otherwise known as Swede or Swedish turnip or yellow turnip and is well-known for its delicate sweet flavor and light freshness of turnips and cabbages. Rutabaga is identical to the turnip, but it can be little bit fleshier compared to turnip. The flesh and the skin of Rutabaga are yellowish in color. The crown of this bulbous veggie sports a purple tinge and ridges. Rutabaga is highly loaded with many vital nutrients and provides many health benefits. The leaves of rutabaga are also believed to be wholesome and are utilized for consumption. Refer this article to get knowledge about rutabaga nutritional facts & health benefits.

Rutabaga Nutritional info & Health Benefits

The name rutabaga has been originated from the Swedish word Rotabagge, which stands for “root bag”. It is a veggie of the Brassica genus and Cruciferae family, which also contains veggies such as cauliflower, cabbage, turnips, Brussels sprouts, kale, broccoli, collards, etc. Some sources suggest that rutabaga is the native of Scandinavia and Russia. According to the historical records and verdicts belonging to the 17th century, this beta carotene-rich vegetable was used as animal fodder as well as consumed as a vegetable in Southern Europe. However, today rutabaga has gain popularity in Europe and America owing to its certain health benefits.

From the last 2 centuries, rutabaga has been cultivated in many parts of the world. Canada is one of the leading producers of this bulbous root vegetable in the globe. Rutabaga is in fact a great flavoring vegetable. The root can be eaten raw, boiled, fried, roasted, baked, steamed or mashed with potatoes. They can be also added in salads, soups, stews, soups stews and casseroles. They turn slightly into orange when cooked and they have more sweetness than turnips. Choose firm and fairly smooth rutabaga, with very few fibrous roots at the base and few leaf scars around the crown. Shriveled or soft rutabagas are not enviable as they will be tough on cooking.

Rutabaga Nutrition Facts

Rutabaga is a wholesome veggie as it is a rich source of protein, vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates and other beneficial nutrients. The good thing about this nutritious vegetable is that it is very low in cholesterol and saturated fat, and low in sodium. It is a very good source of Manganese, Potassium and Vitamin C, and good source of Calcium, Phosphorus, Magnesium, Dietary Fiber, Thiamin, and Vitamin B6. It contains a considerable amount of saturated fat, polyunsaturated fat, monounsaturated fat, pantothenic acid and folic acid. The bad thing about rutabaga is that a big portion of the calories come from sugars.

A list of Rutabaga’s nutritional values provided by a 1 cup or 170g of serving size both in amount and in %daily value is given here.


Calories From Fat

Calories From Protein

Calories From Carbohydrate

Total Calories
Basic Components

Water151 g
Protein2.2 g4%
Ash1.5 g

Vitamin A
3.4 IU
Vitamin C
32 mg53%
Vitamin E
0.5 mg
Vitamin K
0.5 mcg
Vitamin B1 or Thiamin
0.1 mg
Vitamin B2 or Riboflavin
0.1 mg
Vitamin B3 or Niacin
1.2 mg
Vitamin B5 or Pantothenic Acid
0.3 mg
Vitamin B6
0.2 mg
25.5 mcg
Choline25.8 mg
Fats & Fatty Acids

Total Omega-6 Fatty Acids
64.6 mg

Total Omega-3 Fatty Acids
96.9 mg

Polyunsaturated Fat
0.2 g

Total Fat
0.4 g

10.2 g

Dietary Fiber3.1 g12%
Total Carbohydrate
14.9 g

81.6 mg
39.1 mg
Iron0.9 mg5%
554 mg
Phosphorus95.2 mg10%
0.6 mg
Sodium34 mg1%
0.3 mg
Copper0.1 mg3%
1.2 mcg

Rutabaga Health Benefits
  • Rutabaga is loaded highly with powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant nutrient, Vitamin C.
    • This excellent amount of vitamin C in rutabaga helps to reduce wheezing in patients suffering from asthma.
    • Vitamin C deficiency in the body causes diseases such as scurvy, which can lead to easy bruising. Regular consumption of rutabaga lessens the occurrence of scurvy and easy bruising.
  • This tuber contains dietary fiber in abundance, so it is said to be very beneficial in combating constipation problems. Dietary fiber is very useful for digestive health as well as it increases stamina and is also allied with other health benefits. It decelerates the absorption of digested food to keep blood sugar well-balanced and it lowers the cholesterol to decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease.
  • As rutabaga is a flavonoid and vitamin C rich food, it aids in supporting the structure of capillaries.
  • Being a vitamin A or beta-carotene rich veggie, rutabaga is also known to lower the risk of cataract formation.
  • Another plus point of rutabaga is that it is an excellent source of potassium, which provides many nutritional benefits.
    • It is beneficial for the proper functioning of the cardiovascular system.
    • It helps to lower the risk of heart stroke and to reduce the stroke mortality.
    • It is even identified to aid in lowering of high blood pressure (Hypertension).
    • It is vital nutrient for nerve functioning, muscle contraction and carbohydrate metabolism.
    • Moreover, it is useful in regulating the water level of the body.
  • It decreases urinary calcium excretion, and individuals who regularly consume dietary potassium in good amounts are at low risk of developing kidney stones.
  • Rutabaga thwarts the cancer leading substances from contacting or reacting with sensitive body tissues and thereby lowers the risk of some cancers.
  • The vitamin E present in the rutabaga is a powerful antioxidant, which can combat with free radicals in the body.
  • Rutabaga stimulates the lactation and therefore it is utilized for increasing milk production in some regions.
  • Mitigation of Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) and prevention of Spot Baldness (Alopecia) are another valuable benefits of rutabaga.
  • Furthermore, it decreases the risk of type 2 diabetes, protects against Alzheimer's and osteoporosis, prevents epileptic seizures, repairs and protects DNA, increases immune function, slows aging and decreases frequencies of migraine headaches.
There is one caution for individuals suffering from kidney problems; rutabagas are loaded with mustard oil which can cause gas & flatulence, so they must avoid the rutabaga consumption.


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