Daikon radishes come in a variety of forms, and some are more spicy than regular red radishes. Your local food store will surely offer the kind of daikon radish that resembles a very large white carrot. These have a mild flavor compared to red radishes, and are more adaptable in the kitchen. You can enjoy the daikon knowing that it is a vegetable without fat, low in calories and a rich source of vitamin C.
Daikon radishes, also known as Chinese or Oriental radishes, can grow up to 18 inches long and can weigh up to 5 or 6 pounds. You can eat raw young daikon, but if the vegetable is more than 8 inches tall, it is a more mature vegetable that should be cooked, according to the University of Illinois. It is a common ingredient in Asian cuisine, but it also works very well sliced and added to salads and soups, grated in the cabbage salad or roasted with other root vegetables. A cup of sliced daikon has 21 calories, 5 grams of total carbohydrates and 1 gram of protein.
The "Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010" reports that most Americans only consume about 15 grams of fiber per day, which is well below the recommended intake. If you need to increase your fiber consumption, add daikon to your menu. You will get 2 grams of fiber per 1 cup of radish daikon cut into slices. Consuming the recommended amount of fiber (25 grams per day for women and 38 grams for men) reduces the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases because soluble fiber helps reduce cholesterol. It also prevents spikes of sugar in the blood and provides fiber, which keeps the normal functioning of your digestive tract.
Vitamin C antioxidant
Vitamin C is such an important antioxidant that the recommended daily amount is based on consuming enough to ensure maximum antioxidant protection, according to the Institute of Medicine. Your body depends on vitamin C to produce the connective tissue collagen, which supports your skin, blood vessels and muscles. Collagen is also essential for the formation of bones. Calcium and phosphorus crystals attach to a collagen core to create strong but elastic bones. A cup of sliced daikon contains 25.5 milligrams of vitamin C. This amount gives women 34 percent of their recommended daily dose of 75 milligrams a day, while men receive 28 percent of their daily dose Recommended 90 milligrams per day.
Copper for connective tissue
Like vitamin C, copper helps produce connective tissue, but it has a different role.Link collagen and elastin, which adds elasticity to the connective tissue in your skin and blood vessels. It also maintains the integrity of the connective tissue in your heart. While copper is not an antioxidant like vitamin C, it is necessary to synthesize the antioxidants found in most cells in your body. Other copper-dependent enzymes metabolize iron and produce energy. You'll get 14 percent of the recommended daily amount of copper by consuming a 1-cup serving of sliced daikon.