Young vegetables, known as microgreens, are reputed to be particularly good for health. Now, researchers are trying to find out if microgreens — which can quickly be grown at home — are the superfood they’re claimed to be and how they compare to mature veggies. Results to date show their nutritional profiles differ, as do their effects on gut bacteria. Yet, tests in mice suggest that both microgreens and mature vegetables can limit weight gain.
The researchers will present their results today at the fall meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS). ACS Fall 2023 is a hybrid meeting being held virtually and in-person August 13–17 and features about 12,000 presentations on a wide range of science topics.
“The scientific literature suggests that cruciferous vegetables, like kale and broccoli, are good for you,” notes Thomas T. Y. Wang, Ph.D., the project’s principal investigator. The microgreen versions of these foods are particularly touted for their health benefits. Older than sprouts but younger than baby greens, microgreens are typically harvested within a couple of weeks after they start growing. And they can easily be grown in a container on a windowsill.
“When we started this research, not a lot was known about the nutrient content or biological effects of microgreens, so we thought we should take a look at them,” says Wang, a scientist at the Agricultural Research Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). He is working with collaborators there and at the University of Maryland, College Park.
Read more at eurekalert.org