Celeriac, also known as celery root, is an unusual and nutritious vegetable with a wide variety of uses. It is from the same family as celery but is a very different plant. Celeriac that has been washed and peeled can be eaten raw or cooked using different methods.
What is celeriac?
Celeriac has green leaves and stalks that grow above ground, and a root covered in rough, brown skin that grows underground. The edible part of the celeriac plant is the root. Inside it is pale in color, similar to that of a potato or turnip. Its flavor is similar to celery and parsley.
Celeriac contains multiple nutrients that may offer health benefits, as part of a healthy diet, including:
- C vitamin
- vitamin K
- vitamin B-6
Celeriac originated in Mediterranean and north European countries. Ancient Egyptians, Greeks, and Italians used it for medicinal and religious purposes. Scientists first wrote about it as food in the 1600s, and it remains popular throughout Europe.
Health benefits of celeriac
High in vitamin K
Celeriac provides about 34% of recommended daily intake of K vitamin. Vitamin-K improves bone mineralization by promoting osteoblastic activity in the bones. Research studies suggest that it also has an established role in Alzheimer’s disease patients by limiting neuronal damage in the brain.
Assists with digestive health
Celeriac contains fiber which is essential for better digestive health. Celeriac contains both soluble and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber is known to form a gel-like substance in the gut that is a source of nutrients for the good digestive bacteria. Soluble fiber may decrease spikes in blood sugar and help to control cholesterol levels. Insoluble fiber adds the bulk to fecal matter and aids in passing food and waste through the gut. Insoluble fiber is known to help decrease the risk of diabetes.
Diabetes affects millions of people around the world. A healthful diet may lower the risk for type 2 diabetes. In one large study in Europe, scientists examined the association between fruit and vegetable intake. Including root vegetables, and risk for type 2 diabetes. They found that people who ate the most root vegetables had a 13 percent lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Then those who consumed the least amounts. Eating the root of the celeriac plant is one way to increase intake of root vegetables.
Promotes healthy skin
Celeriac has vitamin B5 which is known as pantothenic acid. Pantothenic acid acts as a moisturizer and helps to keep skin soft, smooth and healthy. By acting as an anti-inflammatory, Pantothenic acid encourages skin’s healing process. It is very hydrating and helps to keep skin moist simply by absorbing moisture from the air. Vitamin B5 is a water-soluble vitamin that cannot be stored in the body.
Celeriac is a great source of copper and potassium. Both minerals are important in preventing arthritis. Copper has been found to have an anti-inflammatory capability which helps to relieve the pain associated with arthritis. Copper has the capability to help with muscular strength. To reduce joint pain, and to repair connective tissue. Potassium is an important mineral and responsible for the function of all cells, tissues, and organs in your body. Potassium is important for skeletal and smooth muscle contractions.
Celeriac contains an organic compound called phthalides which act to lower the level of stress hormones in the body. Studies have found that phthalides relax smooth muscles, allowing the blood vessels to expand. This creates more space and lowers blood pressure. This naturally reduces the chances of related cardiovascular diseases such as atherosclerosis, heart attacks, and strokes.