If you’ve never eaten collard greens (considered a Southern specialty), then you just might want to try them if you know what’s good for you. They are an all-around nutritional superstar, rich in lutein and zeaxanthin — antioxidants that studies show may reduce the risk of age-related macular degeneration, a common cause of blindness.
And according to published research, when you chop or chew greens such as collards, sulforaphane is formed, which alerts your liver to produce cancer-fighting enzymes. These enzymes appear to lessen the occurrence of many different types of cancers, including ovarian and breast cancers.
Dark and rich green, collards are also loaded with chlorophyll, calcium, iron, fiber, vitamin A (mostly in the form of beta-carotene) and vitamin C, as well as indol-3-carbinol, which may help protect against colon cancer. And if you’re watching your weight, collard greens contain very few calories, but fill your stomach with fiber and nutrients galore. You don’t have to live in the South to appreciate benefits like these.