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pile of green cabbages

Cabbage health benefits

23 Nov 2022 • 1 min read

Cabbages are among the world’s most popular vegetables. Not only are they a staple of British, Ethiopian, and Italian cooking, but they take pride of place in Japanese, Jamaican, and Chinese, too. Few counties in the world don’t regularly include cabbage in their traditional dishes.

We think it’s high time cabbage made a comeback. This bold brassica is brimming with health benefits. So we’re going to tell you everything you need to know about this superfood here.  

What are cabbages?

Cabbages are brassicas, like broccoli, kale and Brussel sprouts. Although cabbages come in many shapes and sizes, most have layers of dense leaves which gather around a heart.

Popular varieties of cabbage you’ll find in British supermarkets include:

  • Savoy cabbage
  • Red cabbage
  • Sweetheart cabbage, or Hispi cabbage
  • Napa cabbage, or Chinese cabbage

Health benefits of cabbage

Cabbages are packed with health benefits, like:

  • Promote a healthy gut

Brassicas like cabbage change the balance of bacteria, promoting immunity-strengthening bacteria.1,2

  • Encourage bowel health

Cabbage contains lots of fibre, which we know encourages healthy digestive function.3 Recent research has also found that brassicas like cabbage contain molecules which encourage healthy cell regeneration in the bowels and protect against disease.4

Cabbage's nutrition profile

One 89g portion of chopped green cabbage, contains5:

Energy Protein Carbs Fibre Sugar Fat Vitamin K Vitamin C Folate
22 kcal 1g 5g 2g 2.8g 0g 85% of RDA 54% of RDA 10% of RDA


Cabbage is also a good source of minerals, including manganese, potassium, and calcium.

Risks associated with cabbages

Cabbage consumption does have some associated health risks. Cabbages have been known to harvest bacteria like E.coli, which can cause food poisoning.6,7 Reduce the risk by washing cabbage leaves thoroughly before cooking.

Other risks include flatulence, diarrhoea, and hypothyroidism.8

Last updated: 1 March 2021



Author: Bhupesh PanchalSenior Regulatory Affairs Associate

Joined Holland & Barrett: Apr 2019

Masters Degree in Toxicology and BSc Hons in Medical Biochemistry

Bhupesh started his career as a Clinical Toxicologist for Public Health England, advising healthcare professionals all around the country on how to manage clinical cases of adverse exposure to supplements, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, industrial chemicals and agricultural products.

After 7 years in this role and a further year working as a drug safety officer in the pharmaceutical industry, Bhupesh joined Holland & Barrett as a Senior Regulatory Affairs Associate in 2019.

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