Updated: Dec 20, 2020
Microgreens are miniature plants that are popular worldwide for their high nutritional and health benefits. The specialty of Microgreens is that they are harvested just after the cotyledons are developed. That means between sprouts and baby leaf vegetables.
What Plants Can Be Grown as Microgreens
We usually produce Microgreens from seeds of vegetables and herbs. Even some grains and grasses can also use to produce microgreens. Most popular microgreen varieties can be produced from following plant families.
Amaranthaceae family - Amaranthus, Spinach, Beet, Chard, Quinoa...etc.
Amaryllidaceae Family – Garlic, Leeks, Onions...etc.
Apiaceae Family – Carrot, Celery, Fennel...etc.
Asteraceae Family – Chicory, Lettuce, Radicchio...etc.
Cruciferacea/Brassicaceae Family – Cabbage, Cauliflower, Radish, Broccoli, Arugula, Watercress, Mustard...etc.
Cucurbitaceae Family – Cucumber, Melon, Squash...etc.
Lamiaceae Family – Mint, Basil, Rosemary, Sage...etc.
Poaceae Family – Rice, Corn, Barley, Wheat...etc.
So there is a wide range possibility to make microgreens easily.
As media of growing we can use either soil or non-soil media. Non-soil media cultivation is the most common practice for microgreens. Liquid medium (hydroponic), coir dust, coco-peat, and vermiculite like natural or synthetic media can be used as non-soil media. In this method most of the time nutrients are supplied externally via a nutrient solution.
Importance of Microgreens to Our Lives
With the COVID-19 outbreak, immunization became the most talking topic in India. Not only in India, but the whole world also is finding various methods to improve the immune system of the human body.
Why not think about your daily food plate? A healthy diet will keep you away from many of the diseases that plague us. Microgreens will add an invaluable value to your diet.
Why microgreens are so precious?
Microgreens are highly known for their nutritional quality. They give almost same amount of nutrients as mature greens. Sometimes microgreens contain even higher nutrient amounts than its mature greens. Especially they are full of vitamins and minerals. Let’s look at some examples.
Is it just that? Most importantly, microgreens contain large amounts of antioxidants. Now you may be wondering what an antioxidant is. Antioxidants are biochemical compounds that inhibit the formation of free radicals in the human body. Free radicals are compounds that are formed when we are exposed to stress, toxic compounds (pollutants, pesticides) and smoking. Although free radicals are produced naturally in the body, in high concentrations these free radicals can be dangerous and damage body cells. Eventually it could end up being a cancer. Antioxidants therefore help to reduce the build-up of these free radicals unnecessarily and help keep the body healthy.
Not only cancers, but these antioxidants in microgreens also help to lower the risk of heart diseases (by reducing cholesterol levels), Alzheimer’s disease, and diabetes.
Include Microgreens into Your Diet
Microgreens can be incorporated into a variety of dishes such as salads, wraps, and sandwiches. It is better to eat microgreens in fresh form, as over-cooking / processing reduces nutrition and other important properties.
Also as a garnish for soups, pizza, curries, etc., microgreens can be used. Microgreen juice, smoothies are also popular among people. Mint microgreen smoothie is one such great example.
Finally, it is a pleasure to introduce you to these flavorful, colorful, nutritious, and healthy microgreens as part of your diet to help you live a healthier life without wasting your money on a large number of vegetables.
Microgreens will be a worthy addition to your diet.