The Benefits Chicory Has for Our Health

Pretty much all vegetables are going to provide some kind of benefit to our bodies, this can even be considered common knowledge. But not all of us are experts on the variety of wonderful characteristics of chicory. This green, long-stemmed vegetable has been appreciated since ancient times, and here we are going to find out exactly what this plant has to offer.

There are a number of ways that chicory can contribute to our health and well-being. To start with, the vegetable can improve regular digestion and the function of the intestines. It can also help clean the kidneys, as it is a known antioxidant. It has also often been used as an herbal medicine to treat a variety of ailments.

red chicory slices

Varieties of Chicory

One of the best types of chicory among the many varieties is Catalonia chicory. It can be recognized by its ribbed stem and jagged leaves. There is also wild chicory, which is evidently the breed that has been used for the longest time throughout history. The Red variety is known for its crunchiness and pungent flavor. Finally, there is the Pan di Zucchero variety, which has a particularly elongated shape and a white hue.

Cooking Advice

lemon bitters

The first thing we need to consider when cooking chicory is mellowing its distinct bitter flavor. To take care of this, we can add a little vinegar and half a lemon to a pot of boiling water before adding the chicory. Let the chicory sit in the water until it becomes soft, then rinse it with cold water before serving it or cooking it further.

Also, after the blanching process is finished, we can reuse the leftover water. Letting it cool and treating it like a beverage is known to have great advantages for the liver. However, those who suffer from gastritis or ulcers should avoid chicory due to its inulin content. 

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