Health Benefits of Cabbage

I love cabbage and foods made with it like borscht, cabbage rolls and cabbage soup.

As a child I recall that my parents had ulcers and for treatment were told to stay away from cabbage and to drink lots of milk. Well years later the health professionals reversed those guidelines and people were told that if you have ulcers, cabbage is good and milk products are bad.

Currently we have red and green cabbage to choose from, as well as bok choy. They are all basically the same re properties and health benefits. The red cabbage has the additional benefits attributed to foods in the ‘red’ colour family. It’s something like the differing benefits of red and white wine.


In Ancient Rome it was revered as a cure for cancer.

  • contains anti cancer and antioxidant compounds
  • has antibacterial and antiviral attributes
  • has anti ulcer compounds and cabbage juice helps heal ulcers
  • speeds up estrogen metabolism
  • thought to help block breast cancer
  • suppress polyps, a prelude to colon cancer. In studies eating cabbage more than once a week cut men’s colon cancer odds by 66 percent
  • 2 daily tbsp cooked cabbage protects against stomach cancer

Side Effects

  • can cause flatulence
  • sauerkraut, high in tyramine, can trigger migraines

Raw or Cooked

Some of the antioxidant, anticancer, and estrogenic activity is destroyed by cooking. Raw cabbage (as in coleslaw)apparently has stronger overall pharmacological activity.