Radicchio – Nutrition, Health Benefits, & Recipes

Radicchio is a leaf vegetable with vibrant reddish-purple leaves and white veins. The vegetable is commonly mistaken for crimson cabbage however is a type of leaf chicory. It is a perennial plant that grows in Italy and components of America, with California being the best producer. It is often known as Italian chicory due to its in depth use in Italian delicacies. According to “Naturalis Historia”, radicchio was used as a blood air purifier and assist for insomnia within the Roman period. That is as a result of radicchio has Intybin, a sort of analgesic/sedative. 

The fashionable type of radicchio with its deep-crimson color was engineered in 1860 within the Veneto area of Italy by Francesco Van den Borre, a Belgian agronomist. To create the darkish crimson leaves with vivid white veins, he used Imbianchimento (whitening). The course of includes protecting a plant in water, in darkish locations the place the shortage of sunshine inhibits the formation of chlorophyll. The lack of chlorophyll causes lack of their inexperienced pigmentation.

Radicchio has quite a few well being advantages. It is stuffed with nutritional vitamins, minerals and vitamins. In addition, it’s wealthy in antioxidants, has anti-parasitic properties, good for the center and can be identified to battle the expansion of most cancers cells. 

Different styles of radicchio are named after the Italian areas the place they originate. Chioggia, the commonest selection, is formed like a head, whereas treviso is a sort that has an elongated construction. Treviso has a crunchy and distinctive bitter style. Another number of radicchio known as the Castelfranco is mild inexperienced with deep crimson speckles. It has a sweeter flavour than different varieties. It is eaten, tossed with olive oil, and blended into dishes, usually used as a espresso substitute.

Nutritional Value of Radicchio

As per USDA information, 100 grams of radicchio serving incorporates:

  • Energy: 23 kcal
  • Water: 93.1 g
  • Fat: 0.25 g
  • Protein: 1.43 g 
  • Carbohydrate: 4.48 g
  • Fibre: 0.9 g
  • Sugars: 0.6 g
  • Calcium: 19 mg
  • Magnesium: 13 mg

The HealthifyMe Note

Radicchio has a wealthy dietary profile with plentiful minerals and nutritional vitamins. Like a number of greens, it has minimal energy and a hint quantity of carbohydrates. Various nutritional vitamins like nutritional vitamins A, C, Ok and E profit general well being. In addition, the minerals within the vegetable make it wholesome for the center and pores and skin.

Health Benefits of Radicchio

Promotes Healthy Bones

Radicchio is a superb supply of vitamin Ok. One hundred grams of the vegetable affords 255 µg of vitamin Ok. Vitamin Ok is a superb vitamin for bone well being as it’s concerned within the carboxylation of many bone-associated proteins. These proteins regulate the genetic transcription of osteoblastic markers and regulate bone reabsorption. Furthermore, analysis proves that vitamin Ok and calcium work synergistically on bone density.

Research exhibits vitamin Ok will increase the bone mineral density in osteoporotic individuals and reduces fracture charges. As per research, low ranges of vitamin Ok impair osteocalcin activation and reduce osteoblasts’ exercise.

Rich in Antioxidants

Radicchio is wealthy in antioxidants. The wealthy purple color of the vegetable comes from antioxidants known as anthocyanins. According to analysis, anthocyanins can shield the physique from many ailments. For instance, it helps cut back most cancers cell proliferation and inhibit tumour formation. In addition, they’re instrumental in defending your physique in opposition to free radicals and thus are answerable for illness prevention. 

Anthocyanins are additionally helpful for intestinal well being. Interestingly, the crimson components of the leaf have extra anthocyanin content material than the remainder of the leaf.

Reduces Blood Sugar

Radicchio, like chicory, incorporates inulin which is sweet for regulating blood sugar ranges. It can be wealthy in fibre and has a low glycemic index. That makes it glorious for sufferers with diabetes. According to a examine, chicory root extract may delay the early onset of diabetes. Similarly, the inulin in radicchio makes it helpful for diabetes sufferers.

Vitamin Ok in radicchio exhibits enhancements in insulin sensitivity of the physique. It permits the physique to make use of glucose extra successfully, reducing blood sugar. Several research present that vitamin Ok improves insulin sensitivity in males with diabetes.

Aids Cardiovascular System

Radicchio has a major quantity of vitamin C and vitamin E. The advantages of vitamin C for good well being aren’t any secret. There is sufficient proof proving vitamin C advantages in stopping the dangers of cardiovascular ailments. 

Studies recommend that vitamin C prevents apoptosis of vascular easy muscle cells, which helps preserve plagues extra steady if atherosclerosis has developed. Consuming vitamin E-wealthy meals lower the danger of coronary coronary heart ailments. Research associates its advantages with center-aged to older individuals.

The vitamin Ok-wealthy composition of radicchio makes it a blood coagulant. It helps in making 4 of the 13 proteins required for blood clotting. Thus it prevents extreme bleeding. In addition, vitamin Ok is answerable for regulating blood calcium ranges. It is instrumental in producing Matrix Gla Proteins (MGP), which stop calcification or hardening of arteries. Therefore it reduces the dangers of coronary heart assaults brought on by mineral construct-up within the arteries. 

Vitamin Ok additionally helps regulate blood strain. It additionally helps cut back the danger of coronary coronary heart illness or will increase the mortality charge for coronary coronary heart illness.

The anthocyanin content material in radicchio can be helpful for the center. It has anti-inflammatory results and protects the physique in opposition to free radicals inflicting cardiovascular ailments. Radicchio additionally has different polyphenolic compounds like luteolin, confirmed to enhance circulation and forestall blood clots.

Aids Weight Loss

Radicchio is wealthy in dietary fibre, which provides bulk to your food regimen. It helps you’re feeling fuller for longer and therefore, reduces starvation. It can be low in energy, low sodium, fats-free and ldl cholesterol-free. Fibre and antioxidants additionally assist enhance bowel motion and metabolism and forestall bloating. Therefore it is a superb addition to your food regimen to drop some pounds healthily.


Radicchio has a number of advantages credited to its excessive focus of important vitamins. Another profit is its anti-most cancers properties. According to analysis, vitamin C has persistently inhibited the expansion of most cancers cells within the oesophagus, larynx, pancreas and oral cavity. The antioxidant content material in radicchio might also assist the physique battle ailments and forestall metastasis or recurrence of most cancers in a number of cases. 

Improves Cognitive Health

Vitamin Ok is important for the nervous system. In addition, a number of vitamin Ok-dependent hemostatic proteins are very important for the mind and assist mind operate. 

According to analysis, vitamin Ok participates in synthesising sphingolipids, a category of lipids that regulate main mobile processes equivalent to apoptosis, proliferation, and senescence. 

In current years, a change within the variety of sphingolipids has resulted from cognitive decline and neurodivergent ailments. As a end result, vitamin Ok improves psychomotor behaviour and cognition and will stop cognitive decline, particularly in older adults with Alzheimer’s.

Radicchio can be wealthy in folate, potassium and antioxidants. Potassium is answerable for relaying alerts from the mind to each different physique half. In a examine, elevated potassium consumption improves cognitive mind operate and attenuates histopathological markers in sufferers with Alzheimer’s. 

Folate is significant for the creation of DNA and RNA, and neurotransmitters. Folate deficiency is thought to accompany melancholy and cognitive decline. According to research, folate consumption helps cut back psychological fatigue, melancholy, dementia, Alzheimer’s and so forth. 

Healthy for the Skin

Radicchio is superb to your pores and skin. It has an affordable quantity of nutritional vitamins B, C, and Ok. Vitamin B as an antioxidant helps promote pores and skin cell turnover whereas decreasing free radical harm. According to analysis, vitamin C helps enhance collagen synthesis and makes the pores and skin look youthful. Studies have additionally discovered that nutritional vitamins B and C may gain advantage the physiological wound therapeutic course of.

Vitamin Ok helps shield collagen within the physique. Studies additionally emphasise the anti-ageing advantages of vitamin Ok because it helps keep pores and skin elasticity, decreasing the looks of high quality traces and wrinkles. 

The HealthifyMe Note

Radicchio is a wholesome addition to your food regimen. It is stuffed with antioxidants, an excellent supply of dietary fibre, and wealthy in vitamin Ok, zinc and copper. It can be low in energy, sodium, fats-free and ldl cholesterol-free. Its wealthy purple color outcomes from anthocyanins identified for his or her advantages, together with anti-inflammatory, anti-most cancers and anti-diabetic results.

Best Ways to Add Radicchio to Your Diet

Radicchio is thought for its crisp texture and bitter flavour. It is flexible in terms of the flavour profile. It is used so much in Italian and Mediterranean dishes. 

  • You can devour it uncooked, roasted or grilled.
  • Add it to your salad to reap the benefits of its crunchy texture, color and nutrient profile.
  • Grill and function a facet dish.
  • You can use it to carry tuna, hen or seafood.
  • You can add it to your soup, pasta, legumes, tofu and so forth.
  • The roots of radicchio can substitute espresso, very like another chicory.

How to Prepare

  • The right approach to reduce radicchio is dependent upon your recipe, but it surely normally includes eradicating the stem. Start by eradicating any wilted leaves. 
  • Cut the radicchio in half such that the stem is sliced lengthwise. Remove the stem by reducing a V throughout the stem.
  • Once the stem is eliminated, you may reduce it into quarters, separate the leaves or reduce it into skinny slices as per your requirement.
  • To cut back the bitterness, you may soak the items in water for about ten minutes. Cooking additionally reduces bitterness, utilizing reverse flavours in pairs like salty or tangy to stability the bitter.

Healthy Recipes Using Radicchio

Orange Radicchio Salad

Servings: 4

Preparation Time: 10 minutes


  • Radicchio: 1 head
  • Olive oil: 1 tbsp
  • Red wine vinegar: 1 tsp 
  • Navel Orange: 1 massive
  • Salt: ½ tsp
  • Pepper: ¼ tsp
  • Large inexperienced olives: 12
  • Basil leaves: 10-12


  • Heat olive oil in a pan. Saute chopped radicchio with vinegar, salt and pepper.
  • Squeeze orange juice over the salad. Remove the remainder of the peel, reduce oranges into little slices, and add them to the salad.
  • Add the olives and basil leaves and toss the salad. Adjust salt and pepper to style.

Warm Roasted Radicchio and Shrimp Salad with Warm Bacon Vinaigrette

Servings: 4

Preparation Time: 20 minutes

Cooking Time: 42 minutes


  • Radicchio: 2 small heads
  • Extra virgin olive oil: ¼ cup
  • Balsamic vinegar: 3 tbsp
  • Kosher salt: As per style
  • Freshly floor pepper: As per style
  • Medium shrimp: 1 pound
  • Bacon: 3 strips
  • Dijon mustard: 1 tsp
  • Maple syrup: 2 tsp
  • Cherry tomatoes: 1 cup
  • Finely chopped parsley: 2 tbsp


  • Preheat the oven to 425°F. 
  • Prepare the radicchio by eradicating wilted leaves and reducing them into 4 wedges. Leave the basis intact. Toss the wedges with olive oil, ¼ tsp kosher salt, 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar and pepper. Let them marinate in a casserole whereas the oven preheats.
  • To put together the shrimp, toss it in 1 tbsp olive oil, ¼ tsp kosher salt and pepper and organize it on a separate casserole for the reason that shrimp and radicchio have totally different cooking instances.
  • Roast the radicchio and shrimp. The radicchio is roasted for about 15-18 minutes until the leaves begin wilting and changing into crisp across the edges. Put the shrimp within the oven and cook dinner for 3-5 minutes. Remove each from the oven and place them on a reducing board. Chop into chunk-sized items and mix.
  • Prepare your bacon French dressing by cooking the bacon in 1 tbsp of olive oil over average warmth until it will get crispy and begins to render its fats. Add shallots and cook dinner until they soften. Remove it from warmth and add 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar, mustard, maple syrup and cherry tomatoes.
  • Now toss the bacon French dressing with radicchio and shrimp. Garnish with recent parsley.



It is feasible to have an allergic response to radicchio. Therefore, should you expertise swelling, shortness of breath, nausea, or itching after consuming radicchio, you must keep away from its consumption and seek the advice of a health care provider.

Moderate Consumption

Consuming something in extra is detrimental to well being. For instance, radicchio is wealthy in inulin, which in extra may trigger abdomen cramping, flatulence, constipation, diarrhoea and different digestive misery.

Drug Interactions

According to analysis, antiepileptic medication can work together with folate and Vitamin B12 in radicchio. Studies additionally present that in case you are taking blood thinners warfarin, you must keep away from Vitamin Ok-wealthy meals since it would worsen coronary artery calcification. Talk to your physician beforehand about attainable drug interactions.


Radicchio is gorgeous, flavourful and nutrient-dense, which makes it an all-rounder. The lovely crimson-purple of radicchio can add color to your dishes alongside numerous well being advantages. It is an effective supply of Vitamin Ok, fibre, potassium and different hint minerals. It can be wealthy in antioxidants like anthocyanin, answerable for its vivid hue. Benefits of Radicchio embody however aren’t restricted to weight reduction, improved cognitive well being, reducing blood sugar, inhibiting most cancers cells, boosting pores and skin collagen, selling wholesome bones and so forth.

Its bitter and spicy flavour and crunchy texture make it excellent for salad. However, it’s utilized in innumerable candy and savoury dishes as properly. You can add it to something from soup, lentils, and pasta to truffles and mocktails. Radicchio root additionally works as a espresso substitute.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q. Is radicchio a superfood?

A. Royal Rose Radicchio qualifies as a superfood. It is wealthy in dietary fibre, antioxidants, nutritional vitamins and minerals. In addition, it’s plentiful in anthocyanins which assist battle in opposition to free radicals that will trigger most cancers, coronary coronary heart ailments and so forth.

Q. Is radicchio good to your liver?

A. Radicchio helps stimulate liver operate and lets you do away with the toxins in your physique. It has additionally been confirmed helpful for people with liver most cancers. Vitamin Ok in radicchio may assist stop liver most cancers and demise in sufferers with liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma(HCC). It additionally reduces the recurrence of hepatocellular carcinoma(HCC) in sufferers with liver cirrhosis.

Q. Can I eat radicchio uncooked?

A. Yes, radicchio might be consumed uncooked. It has a crispy texture and bitter flavour, nice with a salad. It is the right addition to your meal should you like bitter meals. To preserve it recent, wrap it with plastic and retailer it within the fridge. 

Q. What nutritional vitamins does radicchio have?

A. Radicchio is a superb supply of Vitamin Ok. It has important quantities of vitamin A, C and E. It additionally incorporates pyridoxine (B6), thiamin (B1), riboflavin (B2), niacin (B3), folate, and pantothenic acid (B5).  

Q. Is radicchio good for weight reduction?

A. Yes, radicchio is superb for weight reduction. It is a supply of dietary fibre which retains you full and thus decreases urge for food by including bulk to your food regimen. It can be low in energy, low sodium, fats-free and ldl cholesterol-free, making it excellent to your food regimen routine.

Q. Is radicchio lettuce or cabbage?

A. radicchio is neither lettuce nor cabbage. This leafy vegetable is a member of the chicory household. It is commonly mistaken for lettuce or crimson cabbage due to the similarity of their appearances. 

Q. Is radicchio excessive in iron?

A. Radicchio incorporates iron. According to USDA, 100 grams of radicchio incorporates 0.57 mg of iron. However, it isn’t a possible supply of iron. Therefore, should you want iron-wealthy meals, devour dates, spinach and shellfish.

Q. Does radicchio offer you gasoline?

A. Like different chicory root fibre, radicchio can even trigger gasoline and bloating when consumed in extra. That is due to its excessive focus in inulin. However, consuming carefully is not going to trigger any identified well being points to a wholesome particular person. 

Q. Is radicchio a prebiotic?

A. Since radicchio is a type of chicory, it’s also a lesser supply of prebiotics. Although, by means of fermentation, the inulin in radicchio acts as a prebiotic and helps stimulate the expansion of helpful bifidobacteria within the gut.

Q. Do you eat the white a part of radicchio?

A. Radicchio leaves are probably the most generally used a part of radicchio. You can saute them, grill and even bake them. The white stem of radicchio is normally reduce earlier than chopped into finer items. However, the leaves aren’t the one edible a part of radicchio; you should utilize radicchio roots as a espresso substitute or additive. 

Q. Is radicchio a chicory?

A. Yes, chicory is taken into account a flowering plant and a member of the dandelion household. It has traits equivalent to mild purple flowers and a powerful stem. Radicchio is a chicory member of the family, a bunch of leafy greens identified for his or her spicy bitterness.

Q. Is radicchio the identical as crimson chicory?

A. Yes, radicchio and crimson chicories are the identical issues, they belong to the identical household. Since radicchio is a sort of chicory with darkish crimson and purple color with seen white veins, it’s also generally known as crimson chicory.

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