Health Benefits of Turnip, Nutrition, And Its Side Effects

health benefits of turnip

The health benefits of turnip have a lot. Because turnips are loaded with fiber and vitamins K, A, C, E, B1, B3, B5, B6, B2, and folate (one of the B vitamins), as well as minerals like manganese, potassium, magnesium, iron, calcium, and copper. They are also a good source of phosphorus, omega-3 fatty acids, and protein. Here we are going to discuss the benefits of turnip and its possible side effects.

Health Benefits of Turnip

Improved Heart Health

The fiber in turnips may improve heart health, according to a large number of studies that associate increased consumption of fiber-rich foods, especially fruits and vegetables, with a decrease in cardiovascular disease. This may be one of the many reasons that the American Heart Association recommends planning meals with more fiber-rich foods such as whole grains and fresh or frozen fruits and vegetables.

Weight Loss

At just 34 calories per one-cup serving, turnips can be a smart addition to your diet if weight loss or weight management is your goal. The fiber in turnips (3.1g) helps you meet the recommended daily intake of 28 grams per day. Fiber is the indigestible part of carbohydrates. Eating foods that are high in fiber helps you to feel full longer after eating. For this reason, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics recommends low-calorie foods with fiber for weight management because they slow the speed at which food passes from the stomach to the rest of the digestive system.

Reduced Risk of Disease

In one study, researchers named certain foods that they identify as powerhouse fruits and vegetables. According to the study authors, these are foods that are strongly associated with reduced chronic disease risk. These foods provide higher levels of bioavailable nutrients, including vitamin C. Both turnips and turnip greens (the top leafy part of the turnip) were included in the list of powerhouse vegetables, although the greens ranked higher than the bulb.

Cruciferous vegetables, like turnips, are also high in glucosinolates, which are phytonutrients thought to be helpful in protecting our bodies from certain types of cancers. Glucosinates also have antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. Studies in humans suggest cruciferous vegetables provide cancer protection, especially breast cancer.

Better Skin

Turnips are an excellent source of vitamin C. One of the many benefits of this vitamin is that it is necessary for the production of collagen, the main protein in your skin. Vitamin C may also assist in antioxidant protection and protect against age-related skin decline and UV-induced photodamage.

Authors of a research review published in a 2017 issue of Nutrients noted that healthy skin is positively associated with higher fruit and vegetable intake in a number of studies. Although they note that the active component in the fruit and vegetables responsible for the observed benefit can’t be identified, they note that vitamin C availability may be a factor.

Cell Protection

Vitamin C in turnips also provides certain benefits to other cells in the body. Vitamin C acts as an antioxidant in the body. Antioxidants are believed to prevent oxidative stress caused by exposure to free radicals in our environment (such as cigarette smoke) or free radicals made by the body. Experts recommend that we consume antioxidants in foods such as fruits and vegetables, rather than taking an antioxidant supplement.

May Relieve Intestinal Problems

Regular consumption of turnips may aid proper digestion as they are rich in fiber. Traditionally, vegetable has been used to cure various gastrointestinal ailments. Research suggests that consuming higher quantities of dietary fiber may reduce the risk of diverticular disease as it helps with bowel movement. On the other hand, a few studies suggest that a high fiber intake may not be helpful against asymptomatic diverticulosis. However, more recent studies have reported that a high dietary fiber intake may reduce the risk of diverticular disease. Individuals consuming 30 g of fiber per day may reduce their risk of the disease by 41%.

A high-fiber diet is established to be beneficial to improve the gut bacteria population. These probiotic bacteria help in providing nutrition to the body and also help reduce inflammation. The gut bacteria may also help with bowel movements. More research in this area will provide a better understanding of this benefit.

Turnip had also been shown to fight Helicobacter pylori, which is the bacteria that cause stomach ulcers. Including turnips in your diet would help in improving gut health. They may also provide relief from stomach issues such as bloating, gas, and constipation.

May Improve Cardiovascular Health

Turnips have antidiabetic, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties that may help in reducing the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Veggies have a high content of healthy fats that may help in regulating cholesterol levels. Animal studies have reported that turnip may enhance glucose and lipid metabolism. This effect could also promote cardiovascular health.

May Reduce Cancer Risk

The Glucosinolates and isothiocyanates in turnips have anticancer properties. Research states that turnips may have protective effects against cancers of the ovary, colon, bladder, lung, prostate, and breast. Studies in human lung cancer cells have reported the anticancer activity of turnips.

May Protect the Liver and Kidney

Turnips also exhibited hepatoprotective activity in mice. In another rat study, turnip root ethanolic extract was found to offer protection against hepatic injury. Turnip water extract was also found to protect against hepatic fibrogenesis (formation of a large amount of scar tissue in the liver).

Overall, these studies indicate that turnip has an important role in protecting the liver. A similar role of turnip was observed in kidneys. The vegetable had a protective effect against renal injury in rats. This renoprotective effect was also observed against rats in another study.

May have Antidiabetic Properties

Studies have established that turnip extracts have anti-diabetic effects. It is reported that vegetables can help regulate glucose levels by increasing the insulin/glucagon ratio. However, more studies are needed to further understand the anti-diabetic properties of turnips.

May Help Reduce Anemia

Iron deficiency is one of the leading causes of anemia. Iron is a major component of hemoglobin present in red blood cells. It is essential for carrying oxygen to all parts of the body. Turnips are rich in iron, and including them in your diet may help in combating fatigue from anemia. Turnips are also rich in vitamin C, which helps with iron absorption.

May Help Prevent Osteoporosis

Turnips contain glucosinolates that have been reported to help in bone formation in rats. The vegetable also has vitamin K. This vitamin helps in reducing the risk of fractures, promoting calcium absorption, and increasing bone density.

May Help Improve Memory

Turnip greens contain choline. Choline is essential for many vital functions. It is a structural component of cell membranes that helps with memory. It is also a component of neurotransmitters and helps reduce inflammation.

May Help During Pregnancy

Turnip greens are a good source of both folic acid and iron. These are essential for women during pregnancy. Regular consumption of this root vegetable, along with other leafy green vegetables, can help pregnant women with their daily nutritional requirements.

156g Turnip Nutrition

  • Calories: 34
  • Fat: 0.1g
  • Sodium: 25mg
  • Carbohydrates: 7.8g
  • Fiber: 3.1g
  • Sugars: 4.6g
  • Protein: 1.1g


A one-cup serving of boiled turnips provides just 34 calories and most of that is carbohydrate. You’ll consume nearly 8 grams of carbs in a single serving, but just over 3 grams is fiber. You’ll also consume about 4.6 grams of naturally-occurring sugar and a small amount of starch.

Turnips are believed to have a glycemic index of 62. The glycemic load of cooked turnips is estimated to be 2. A glycemic index of 62 is considered to be moderate, while a glycemic load of 2 is considered to be low. Glycemic load takes portion size into account when estimating a food’s impact on blood sugar levels.


Turnips are nearly fat-free, providing just 0.1 grams of fat per one-cup serving.


There is just over 1 gram of protein in each serving of turnips.

Vitamins and Minerals

Turnips are an excellent source of vitamin C, providing 18mg or about 20% of the recommended daily allowance. You’ll also get small doses of other nutrients including potassium, manganese, calcium, and vitamin B6.

Turnip side effects

If you are suffering from thyroid disorders, it is best to avoid eating turnips as this vegetable contains certain compounds that may affect the thyroid gland and interfere with the functioning of the hormone. If you are on nitrate drugs, it is again advisable to abstain from consuming this vegetable as it contains high content of nitrate.


What are the benefits of eating turnips?

Like all vegetables, turnips are very low in saturated fat and cholesterol. They are a good source of vitamin B6, folate, calcium, potassium, and copper. A very good source of dietary fiber, vitamin C, and manganese. The turnip greens are a super food and packed with nutrients.

Is eating raw turnip good for you?

Turnip greens load you up with vitamins A and C. One cup of raw turnip greens has 6,373 international units (IU) of vitamin A and 33 milligrams (mg) of vitamin C.

Are turnips good for weight loss?

Turnips and other cruciferous vegetables that are high in fiber help make people feel fuller for longer, and they are low in calories.

Is turnip good for skin?

Turnip greens can help maintain healthy skin and hair, because of their high vitamin A content. Vitamin A is also necessary for the growth of all bodily tissues, including skin and hair. It also plays a role in sebum production, and sebum keeps the hair moisturized.

Are turnips good for kidneys?

Turnips are kidney-friendly and make an excellent replacement for vegetables that are higher in potassium like potatoes and winter squash. These root vegetables are loaded with fiber and vitamin C. They are also a decent source of vitamin B6 and manganese.

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