National Kale Day
the first Wednesday in October (since 2013)
According to the creators of National Kale Day, the day "celebrates kale's incredible health benefits, highlights kale's culinary versatility, and promotes eating, growing and sharing kale throughout America." Kale is a loose-leafed cruciferous vegetable and a nutrient-dense superfood. It contains phytonutrients that fight against obesity, heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and inflammation, and may even help improve mood. It also has more than 45 compounds as well as anti-inflammatory nutrients that also take on cancer. Kale also assists in balancing blood sugar, is detoxifying, and promotes weight loss. One cup up kale contains 33 calories, 134% of one's daily value of vitamin C, 684% of one's daily value of vitamin K, and 204% of one's daily value of vitamin A. It is also a good source of fiber, calcium, iron, and vitamin B6.
A versatile food, kale can be cooked or eaten raw. It is commonly used in salads or baked into chips. It can be used to make many other things, from smoothies to pizza. It can even be added to popcorn. It is easier on the digestive system when eaten cooked instead of raw.
Once called peasant's cabbage, the name "kale" comes from "kail," the Scottish name for the plant. Kale is usually harvested in fall or winter, being grown in the seasons prior; the colder weather improves its quality and flavor. By the 2010s, kale had increased in popularity to become the most beloved of superfoods, even though some other foods are just as nutritionally dense. Dr. Drew Ramsey and Chef Jennifer Iserloh created National Kale Day and started a petition at Change.org to try to add to the day's legitimacy. Today we celebrate kale on account of its many health benefits and its versatility in the kitchen, and we work to promote its continued use.
How to Observe
You could celebrate the day by having a kale party or potluck, where attendees bring their favorite kale dishes to pass. You could then have guests share their kale recipes with each other. Other ways to celebrate could be to post your favorite kale recipes on social media with the hashtag #NationalKaleDay, buying some kale seeds, visiting the National Kale Day Facebook page, or making a new kale recipe. Some recipes you could try include roasted kale chips, kaleslaw, smoothies, salads, kale pizza, and kale popcorn. More recipes could be found in Fifty Shades of Kale: 50 Fresh and Satisfying Recipes That Are Bound to Please, a book written by the creators of today's holiday.