Chard. What? When I hear the word, I think of “charred.” Like, the way I DON’T want my meat cooked. I had no idea what chard is until I read this next installment of Michi’s Ladder foods by Beachbody’s Denis Faye. Another interesting food I’ve never eaten or heard of. 🙂

Climbing Michi’s Ladder: Chard
By Denis Faye

No, it’s not over-grilled meat. It’s a leafy green vegetable that’s a member of the beet family. However, unlike its shirt-staining cousin, you actually eat the leaves of chard, not the root (although beet leaves are growing in popularity). It also goes by the names Swiss chard and silver beet.

The nutrition facts

You get a whopping 35 calories from a cup of boiled chard, and 4 grams of fiber. You’ll also get 214 percent of the recommended daily allowance (RDA)* of vitamin A, 53 percent of vitamin C, 17 percent of vitamin E, 38 percent for magnesium, 22 percent for iron, 27 percent of potassium, 29 percent of manganese, 14 percent of copper, 10 percent of calcium, and a freakishly huge 716 percent of the RDA for vitamin K. And there’s a little thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B6, folate, phosphorus, and zinc for your effort.

How do you eat this stuff?

Feel free to try and eat it raw, but it’s pretty tough and bitter, so you’re better off boiling it or sautéing it with a little olive oil and apple cider vinegar, maybe with a clove of minced garlic. As with bok choy (see “Climbing Michi’s Ladder: Bok Choy” ), the stems take longer than the leaves to cook, so if you’re a fancy chef-type, give them a 2- to 3-minute head start.

1 cup of chard, cooked, boiled, drained, without salt (175 g)
Calories: 35
Fat: <1 g
Carbs: 7 g
Fiber : 4g
Protein: 3g


Michi’s Ladder is Beachbody’s guide to nutritious eating. If you only ate from Tiers 1 and 2, you would have a near-perfect diet!