Artichokes are rich in fiber, vitamin A, vitamins B (folic acid, niacin, riboflavin, thiamine, biotin), vitamin C, as well as minerals such as chromium (trace mineral), magnesium (trace mineral), manganese, and potassium. A medium-sized artichoke containing just 60 calories and 0.2g of fat can provide you with all these nutrients. Artichokes also contain a high proportion of oligosaccharide (a type of carbohydrate), which serves as food for the friendly bacteria in your intestinal tract. This makes the artichoke a natural probiotic food that supports the health of your digestive system. Artichokes contain a form of carbohydrates, known as inulin, which is handled very differently by the body as compared to other sugars. For this reason, artichokes are very low in calories and can actually be beneficial to those with diabetes. In fact, inulin has been shown to help improve blood sugar level control. Note however that artichokes should be consumed as fresh as possible, as inulin is easily broken down into other sugars when stored for some time. Artichokes are actually very perishable. The ones whose leaves have begun to spread apart and turn woody or dry are likely to be way past their prime.