Swiss chard has grown popular—very popular, if the amount of refrigerated space allotted to it in our local organic supermarket is an indicator.I asked the young man restocking the produce case if they had mustard greens, but like the other stores in town, he said they don’t carry them anymore.In my astonishment at the amount of store space devoted just to swiss chard, I commented on it as he piled it up.It has joined the ranks of kale and spinach as top sellers in the fresh greens department.But, a ½ cup of swiss chard has 4 to 7 times that amount – far in excess of what is considered “typical” and “tolerable” on a routine basis.Oxalates have enormous health consequences: If you happen to like nuts and swiss chard, spinach, or beet greens you could be heading for physical pain, poor sleep, or kidney stones.I never connected my weird symptoms of nightly hiccups, belching, restless legs, and poor sleep to my diet.So later, I was shocked when I accidentally cured my sleep problem by eliminating high oxalate foods like swiss chard (including my beloved sweet potatoes).As a last resort, I corrected this dietary mistake and was surprised at the results as we each recovered effortlessly from chronic health conditions.The produce aisle has become a loaded gun, and we are the innocent kids who have no idea about the dangers lurking there.If you want to avoid accidental harm from oxalate, drop the swiss chard, beet greens, and spinach.What mustard greens and romaine lettuce lack in hipness and glamor, they make up for by letting you sleep at night!The values of oxalate content presented here are based on testing performed at the University of Wyoming in Laramie on behalf of the VP Foundation. .
Are the Stalks or Stems of Ruby Red Swiss Chard Poisonous?
A “super vegetable” if you're looking to pack in the vitamins, Swiss chard’s rainbow and ruby red versions are often confused with rhubarb, which is a fruit. .
How to Grow Swiss Chard
When dietitians talk about leafy green vegetables, Swiss chard is at the top of the list.Sow chard seeds directly in the garden in spring when the soil reaches 50 degrees F, or about two weeks before the last frost date.A fence is your best bet for keeping deer from consuming your crop in late summer or fall.Swiss chard tolerates light frost, so you can harvest inner leaves through November even in northern climates.With a season extender, cold frame, row cover, or greenhouse you can grow and harvest Swiss chard into the winter.If you started the seeds indoors in a container, you will need to transplant the seedlings when it is time to move them outdoors.When consumed in excess, oxalic acid can cause symptoms such as abdominal discomfort, convulsions or tremors, low blood pressure, kidney stones, vomiting, and weak pulse.Because blanching takes literally a few minutes, it’s recommended to freeze Swiss chard before you store it to avoid these risks.Freezing your homegrown Swiss chard stops the action of the enzymes that can cause the greens to become bitter while they’re being stored in the freezer.To harvest Swiss chard correctly, pick the leaves by snapping the stem right at the base of the plant.If you are sowing your own seeds, you can get quite an early head start outdoors as they thrive on colder temperatures.If you want to get an early start on growing Swiss chard, sow seeds indoors and move them outside as temperatures begin to warm up.Soak seeds for 15 minutes in cold water prior to planting to speed up germination.Don’t allow the leaves to grow bigger than 10 inches long, as they will begin to taste earthy and bitter.It’s unlikely that you will accidentally consume enough Swiss chard to be problematic, but eating more than seven pounds per day of this leafy green can cause health problems.The oxalic acid that provides chard with its bitter, earthy flavor can also cause symptoms including abdominal discomfort, convulsions or tremors, low blood pressure, kidney stones, vomiting, and weak pulse if you consume too much of it.Like all garden vegetables, Swiss chard performs best when provided with a regular source of water.Swiss chard isn’t just tasty—it’s nutritious, too, with lots of health benefits when you make it part of your regular diet.Like other dark, leafy green vegetables, Swiss chard is one of the most nutrient-dense foods you can eat.Swiss chard is a very hardy plant, which can endure hot and cold weather with relative ease.Swiss chard can even stand a bit of neglect on your part, and tends to bounce back easily from less than optimal growing conditions.Swiss chard isn’t just acceptable for dogs to eat—it’s a healthy part of our canine friends’ diet.This leafy green provides dogs with calcium, iron, potassium, and a dose of vitamins A, C, and K.When consumed in moderation (as most of us are likely to do under usual circumstances), Swiss chard is a delicious and healthy part of the diet.This potential downfall is due to the oxalic acid that gives the greens their signature bitter, earthy flavor.Getting more than your fair share of oxalic acid can result in symptoms including abdominal discomfort, convulsions or tremors, low blood pressure, kidney stones, vomiting, and weak pulse.Although plenty of plants make good neighbors for Swiss chard in the garden, there are some varieties you should watch out for. .
Swiss chard: Possible health benefits, uses, and risks
Along with other leafy greens and descendants of the beet family, Swiss chard contains high levels of nitrates, which been shown to lower blood pressure , reduce the amount of oxygen needed during exercise, and enhance athletic performance.However, consumers should not add salt to Swiss chard, because it already has 103 mg of sodium per raw cup, which is 4.5 percent of the recommended daily allowance.Swiss chard also contains lesser amounts of thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B6, calcium, phosphorus, zinc, and selenium .Many studies have suggested that consuming more plant foods such as Swiss chard decreases the risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and overall mortality and promotes a healthy complexion, increased energy, and overall lower weight.These minerals are thought to reduce blood pressure by releasing sodium out of the body and helping arteries dilate.A 2013 study published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, found that foods that are high in dietary nitrates, like Swiss chard, have multiple vascular benefits.These include reducing blood pressure, inhibiting platelet aggregation, and preserving or improving endothelial dysfunction.Swiss chard contains chlorophyll, which may be effective at blocking the cancer-causing heterocyclic amines generated when grilling foods at a high temperature.In one study, beetroot juice, also high in dietary nitrates, improved performance by 2.8 percent over 11 seconds in a 4-kilometer (km) bicycle time trial. .
9 Healthy Facts About Swiss Chard
The plant has numerous monikers, including silverbeet, Roman kale, and strawberry spinach.The tall leafy vegetable is a part of the goosefoot family -- aptly named because the leaves resemble a goose’s foot. .