Arugula Health Benefits, Nutrition and Vegetable Facts

Health Benefits of Eating Arugula

Arugula (also known as rocket salad) is not only rich in nutrients, but also has therapeutic effects on certain diseases and conditions. Here are some health properties and advantages of eating the leafy vegetable.
  • Like other cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower, arugula has a good amount of phytochemicals including indoles, isothiocyanates, sulforaphane and thiocyanates. These compounds are anti-carcinogenic, which protect you against cancer of breast, cervix uteri, ovary, prostate and colon.
  • Rocket salad is an important source of folate, having 97 mcg out of 100 g in the fresh raw vegetable. Folate is vital for pregnant women as it helps prevent the newborns from neural tube defect.
  • Salad Greens like arugula, beet, kale, spinach and Swiss chard are rich in antioxidant carotenoids, such as lutein, zeaxanthin and carotene. These compounds are useful to prevent age-related macular degeneration and cancer.
  • Arugula is loaded with vitamin A (retinol), just like kale. There is 2,373 IU of vitamin A contained in every 100 g of the raw vegetable, while the beta carotene content is 1,424 mcg. Beta carotene converts into vitamin A in the body. This essential vitamin is effective in maintaining healthy vision and protects you from oral cavity and lung cancer.
  • Fresh rocket leaves are also full of B-complex vitamins which are critical nutrients for mind-related things like relieving stress, improving memories, and treating depression.
  • Arugula has an abundance of potent antioxidant vitamin C (ascorbic acid). The vitamin helps prevent scurvy disease, improve immune system and fight harmful free radicals.
  • Rocket is a great source of vitamin K. It supply 90% of the RDA in every 100 g. Vitamin K promotes osteotrophic activity that strengthens the bones in the body. It is also often used in treating Alzheimer’s disease as it helps reduce neuronal damage of the brain.
  • With only 25 kcal in 100 g fresh arugula leaves, the wonderful vegetable is low in calories and high in dietary fiber

Facts about Arugula

Fresh Arugula Leaves

Arugula (scientific name known as Eruca vesicaria sativa) is a leafy vegetable belongs to the mustard family. It is also called in various names including rocket, roquette, rucketta rucola and Italian cress. The plant is related to watercress and radish, so arugula leaves taste slightly peppery.

Originated from the Mediterranean, arugula has been cultivated as a vegetable way back to the Roman era, where the leaves were eaten as a vegetable, the seeds were used to flavor oil, and the plant itself was made medicinal and aphrodisiac compounds.

The leafy greens can be consumed raw, added to make salads, or cooked. It tastes great when steamed and put in pasta or sautéed gently in olive oil. Also, arugula s often made into pesto and consumed with potatoes or pasta or as a compliment to grilled or roasted meats. 

Arugula Nutrition Facts and Calories

Nutrition Value of 100 g Raw Arugula
Calories 25 kcal
Total Fat 1 g
Cholesterol 0 mg
Sodium 27 mg
Total Carbohydrates 4 g
Dietary Fiber 2 g
Sugars 2 g
Protein 3 g


Arugula Recipe

Arugula, Endive, and Radicchio Salad Recipe

Serve: 8

  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons white-wine vinegar
  • 1/2 kg arugula, coarse stems removed
  • 1 head radicchio, thinly sliced
  • 2 Belgian endives, cut into 1-cm pieces, crosswise
  • Salt and pepper


  • Combine the oil and vinegar in a bowl and whisk. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • In another separate bowl, toss all the vegetables with vinaigrette until well-coated. Serve. 

Arugula Side Effects

Adverse reaction from eating arugula is unknown.

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