White cabbage can be eaten both raw and cooked. As a food, it provides many nutrients, and as a medicine it is used to treat ulcers and wounds. It also helps with stomach or digestion problems.
From Wikipedia: “Cabbage or headed cabbage (comprising several cultivars of Brassica oleracea) is a leafy green or purple biennial plant, grown as an annual vegetable crop for its dense-leaved heads. It is descended from the wild cabbage, B. oleracea var. oleracea, and is closely related to broccoli and cauliflower (var. botrytis), Brussels sprouts (var. gemmifera) and savoy cabbage (var. sabauda) which are sometimes called cole crops. ...
Cabbages are prepared in many different ways for eating. They can be pickled, fermented for dishes such as sauerkraut, steamed, stewed, sautéed, braised, or eaten raw. Cabbage is a good source of vitamin K, vitamin C and dietary fiber. Contaminated cabbage has been linked to cases of food-borne illness in humans.”
“Cabbage is prepared and consumed in many ways. The simplest options include eating the vegetable raw or steaming it, though many cuisines pickle, stew, sautée or braise cabbage.
Pickling is one of the most popular ways of preserving cabbage, creating dishes such as sauerkraut and kimchi, although kimchi is more often made from Chinese cabbage (B. rapa). Savoy cabbages are usually used in salads, while smooth-leaf types are utilized for both market sales and processing. Bean curd and cabbage is a staple of Chinese cooking, while the British dish bubble and squeak is made primarily with leftover potato and boiled cabbage and eaten with cold meat. ...
The characteristic flavor of cabbage is caused by glucosinolates, a class of sulfur-containing glucosides. Although found throughout the plant, these compounds are concentrated in the highest quantities in the seeds; lesser quantities are found in young vegetative tissue, and they decrease as the tissue ages. Cooked cabbage is often criticized for its pungent, unpleasant odor and taste. These develop when cabbage is overcooked and hydrogen sulfide gas is produced.”
Nutrients and phytochemicals:
“Cabbage is a rich source of vitamin C and vitamin K, containing 44% and 72%, respectively, of the Daily Value (DV) per 100 gram amount. Cabbage is also a moderate source (10–19% DV) of vitamin B6 and folate, with no other nutrients having significant content per 100 gram serving.
Basic research on cabbage phytochemicals is ongoing to discern if certain cabbage compounds may affect health or have anti-disease effects. Such compounds include sulforaphane and other glucosinolates which may stimulate the production of detoxifying enzymes during metabolism. Studies suggest that cruciferous vegetables, including cabbage, may have protective effects against colon cancer. Cabbage is a source of indole-3-carbinol, a chemical under basic research for its possible properties.”
“Excessive consumption of cabbage may lead to increased intestinal gas which causes bloating and flatulence due to the trisaccharide raffinose, which the human small intestine cannot digest.”
“The cooling properties of the leaves were used in Britain as a treatment for trench foot in World War I, and as compresses for ulcers and breast abscesses. Accumulated scientific evidence corroborates that cabbage leaf treatment can reduce the pain and hardness of engorged breasts, and increase the duration of breast feeding. Other medicinal uses recorded in European folk medicine include treatments for rheumatism, sore throat, hoarseness, colic, and melancholy. In the United States, cabbage has been used as a hangover cure, to treat abscesses, to prevent sunstroke, or to cool body parts affected by fevers. The leaves have also been used to soothe sore feet and, when tied around a child's neck, to relieve croup. Both mashed cabbage and cabbage juice have been used in poultices to remove boils and treat warts, pneumonia, appendicitis, and ulcers.”
- “Savoy – Characterized by crimped or curly leaves, mild flavor and tender texture
- Spring Greens – Loose-headed, commonly sliced and steamed
- Green – Light to dark green, slightly pointed heads. This is the most commonly grown cultivar.
- Red – Smooth red leaves, often used for pickling or stewing
- White, also called Dutch – Smooth, pale green leaves
Some sources only delineate three cultivars: savoy, red and white, with spring greens and green cabbage being subsumed into the latter.”
Production and consumption:
“The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations reported that world production of cabbage and other brassicas for 2014 was 71.8 million metric tonnes, with China accounting for 47% of the world total.”
“Cabbage consumption varies widely around the world: Russia has the highest annual per capita consumption at 20 kilograms (44 lb), followed by Belgium at 4.7 kilograms (10 lb), the Netherlands at 4.0 kilograms (8.8 lb), and Spain at 1.9 kilograms (4.2 lb). Americans consume 3.9 kilograms (8.6 lb) annually per capita.”
“It is a multi-layered vegetable. Under conditions of long sunlit days such as are found at high northern latitudes in summer, cabbages can grow much larger.”