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Brussels Sprouts Health Benefits

Updated on June 21, 2020
rajan jolly profile image

Rajan is a botany and chemistry major. He has worked as a poultry breeder for 23 years, breeding layer and broiler parents.

Brussels Sprouts
Brussels Sprouts | Source

Latin Name : Brassica oleracea (Gemmifera Group)

Brussels sprouts are a miniature cabbage lookalike vegetable, belonging to the green leafy vegetables, the cruciferous group. It is thought to have originated in the 13th century in Brussels, Belgium and hence its name.

It is a cool-weather vegetable, the yield being best at temperatures of 59 - 64 deg F. Brussels sprouts belong to the same family as cabbage, collard greens, kale, broccoli.

Basically, they are the buds that grow in the axils of leaves which whorl around a thick central stem or stalk, in a helical fashion. These buds or sprouts as they are sometimes called, start maturing from below upwards. The buds are harvested when they are 1-2 inches in diameter but before the lower leaves start turning yellow. Brussels sprouts can be harvested several times or the entire stalk can be harvested at one go.

Brussels sprouts can be eaten by boiling, microwaving, steaming, stir-frying or roasting. Boiling destroys a lot many nutrients, in fact, anti-cancer compounds. Other modes of cooking do not affect nutrient levels much.

Overcooking can destroy their flavour and taste. For best health benefits, cut brussels sprouts and let them sit for 5 minutes, to extract the maximum health-giving components, and then steam them.

Brussels Sprouts Plants


Freeze Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts can be frozen to avail their benefits when they are not available fresh.

Select green, firm and compact heads. Make sure they are free of insects. Remove all yellow or brown leaves and then wash them well. Sort them into 3 sizes.

Next, blanch them in water for -

  • 3 minutes for small heads
  • 4 minutes for medium heads
  • 5 minutes for large heads

Cool immediately in cold water below 60 deg F or under the ice. Take care to ensure the cooling is done for the same amount of time as blanching.

Drain the water. Put in freezer bags, seal and freeze.

Steaming Brussels Sprouts

Cut brussels sprouts into quarters and let them sit for 5 minutes, to enhance the health-giving nutrients, before steaming them or cooking it the way you wish to.

Brussels Sprouts Nutrition Facts

  • They are high in Vitamins C and K, with 100 grams providing about 140% of daily need of Vit C & 150% of the daily requirement of Vit K.
  • Low in Calories and fat, just 45 calories in 100 grams.
  • Contain a decent amount of dietary fiber.
  • No cholesterol.
  • Presence of appreciable amounts of Vitamins A & E.
  • Rich in minerals like copper, potassium, iron, manganese, calcium and phosphorus while being low in sodium.
  • Good amounts of many B complex vitamins including folates.

Brussels Sprouts Nutrition Value

(click column header to sort results)
Brussel sprouts (Brassica oleracea Gemmifera Group) fresh, Nutrition value per 100 g  
(Source: USDA National Nutrient data base)
Nutrient Value
Percentage of RDA
43 Kcal
8.95 g
3.38 g
Total Fat
0.30 g
0 mg
Dietary Fiber
3.80 g
61 mcg
0.745 mg
Pantothenic acid
0.309 mg
0.219 mg
0.90 mg
0.139 mg
Vitamin A
754 IU
Vitamin C
85 mg
Vitamin K
177 mcg
25 mg
389 mg
42 mg
0.70 mg
1.40 mg
23 mg
0.337 mg
69 mg
1.6 mcg
0.42 mg
Alpha - Carotene
6 mcg
Beta - Carotene
450 mcg
0 mcg
1590 mcg

Brussels Sprouts On The Central Stem

In Leaf Axils
In Leaf Axils | Source

Brussels Sprouts Health benefits

Pub Med has done about 100 studies on brussels sprouts and more than half of these are on its health benefits in relation to cancer.

Brussels sprouts contain the highest amount of total glucosinolates content among all cruciferous vegetables.

  • The phytochemicals, thiocyanates, indoles, lutein, zeaxanthin, sulforaphane and isothiocyanates provide excellent protection against breast, lung, prostate, colon, ovary cancers.
  • The glucoside sinigrin also provides protection against colon cancer by destroying the precancerous cells.
  • The antioxidants Vitamins A, C & E prevent free radical damage.
  • Zeaxanthin prevents macular degeneration of the eye, a form of retinal damage.
  • The high Vitamin K levels provide bones strength, control neuron damage in the brain, thus benefiting in Alzheimer's.
  • The various minerals control the heart rate, blood pressure, promote haemoglobin formation and prevent oxidation of tissues.
  • The high fibre content reduces cholesterol as well as many digestive issues like constipation, indigestion and also lowers blood sugar and controls weight. Sulforaphane also prevents the growth of H.Pylori in the stomach.
  • Vitamins A, C, E, and manganese as well as the flavonoid antioxidants like quercetin, kaempferol, etc, control free radical damage.
  • Glucobrassicin gets converted to Indole-3-carbinol, and along with omega 3 fatty acids and vitamin K fights many inflammatory conditions.
  • Sulforaphane is an anti-inflammatory. It prevents blood vessel damage, heart attack and atherosclerosis. Folate suppresses homocysteine formation and thus prevents heart disease.

W.H.Foods suggest consuming 2 cups of cruciferous vegetables like brussels sprouts, 4 to 5 times a week to derive the maximum health benefits.

Coles de Brucelas

Brussels sprouts made the spanish way
Brussels sprouts made the spanish way | Source

Braised Brussels Sprouts

Brussels Sprouts can be braised in saltwater as

  • It cooks them faster
  • It brings out their natural flavour without the typical smell and taste that many people dislike.

Brussels sprouts can be braised with plain water or a broth or even by their own moisture.

Brussels Sprouts For Weight Loss

Brussels sprouts are extremely low in fats and have no cholesterol. Importantly they are high in protein. With the added advantage of being nutritionally rich in a variety of vitamins and dietary fibre. This makes brussels sprouts an ideal food to incorporate in a weight loss diet. Their consumption ensures that even when dieting, the requirement of enough vitamins and minerals so important to everyday body functions is met.


As with all cruciferous vegetables, Brussels sprouts too may cause swelling of the thyroid gland. Therefore those with thyroid gland issues should avoid its consumption.

This does not mean that brussels sprouts are goitrogenic or goitre causing. It is just that, certain substances in these cruciferous foods react to unique health circumstances in certain people to cause enlargement of the thyroid gland.


The information provided in this hub is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult your physician, or health care provider before taking any home remedies, supplements or starting a new health regime.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Brussels Sprouts - The Indian Way

Caramelized Brussels Sprouts

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.

© 2012 Rajan Singh Jolly


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    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I too love Brussels Sprouts and have been promoting them for years. It's nice to meet somebody else who loves them as much as me. I always told everyone, they are good for you.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      8 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      Thanks moonlake.

    • moonlake profile image


      8 years ago from America

      I make brussels sprouts for most every family get together, our youngest son loves them. Good information. Voted up.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      8 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      Sue, moderation is the keyword in everything, Even healthy food can harm if taken in excess. Most of the green leafy vegetables are very rich in vitamin K and vitamin K is a blood coagulant. So it is imperative that foods containing vitamin K in high quantities are consumed moderately as also proper precautions should be taken if any medicines are taken.

      Glad you husband got medical aid in time.

      Thanks for your input.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      My husband loved his green veggies. He ate a couple of large portions per day. He was taken to hospital breathless and eventually was diagnosed with clots on both lungs. Had the doctor not realised he was ill and not sent him to hospital he would have been dead the next day! He is now on warfarin for life. A dose of 11mg per day. His blood is now stable; he rarely eats any green veggies now. Maybe once a week he will have kale, broccoli or cabbage.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      8 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      Thanks for stopping by Perrya.

    • perrya profile image


      8 years ago

      I love them with salt and butter.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      8 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      Thanks for the visit Au fait. Glad you like this healthy vegetable.

    • Au fait profile image

      C E Clark 

      8 years ago from North Texas

      I have always loved Brussels sprouts since one of our neighbors brought us some from her garden when I was about 11. They're one of my favorite vegetables. I like them steamed with just a little butter, but your recipes here look yummy too!

      Voted up and useful!

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      8 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      @ dwachira - Thanks for reading. Nice to know you found it interesting and useful. Thanks for sharing.

      @ HyphenBird - always a pleasure to have your comments, Brenda. Thanks.

    • Hyphenbird profile image

      Brenda Barnes 

      8 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

      Now I have to have brussels sprouts. These recipes look so good. I love the caramelized recipe. Oh I love them all! We have not had brussels sprouts in a long time. I will pick up some today. Thanks for the heath information and the recipes. My vote is YUM.

    • dwachira profile image

      Danson Wachira 

      8 years ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      Hi Rajan,

      It is obvious that you really take time to prepare your hubs, they are well informing and the write up is well organized. I didn't know Brussels sprouts can be frozen for more benefits. Great article, voted up and shared.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      8 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      @ midget - Thanks for reading and leaving your comments Michelle and thanks for sharing too.

      @ everythingdazzles - Glad you liked the hub, Janelle. Thanks for visiting.

    • everythingdazzles profile image


      8 years ago from Houston

      Love all of the suggestion. Brussels sprouts are so tasty and awesome. Thank you.

    • midget38 profile image

      Michelle Liew 

      8 years ago from Singapore

      Like brussels, Rajan, just find them a bit bitter! But they're chock full of benefits, as this comprehensive hub well outlines. I share this as well!

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      8 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      @ dinkan - thanks for reading. appreciate the sharing.

      @ Esmeowl - you are welcome. Thanks for stopping by.

    • Esmeowl12 profile image

      Cindy A Johnson 

      8 years ago from Sevierville, TN

      I am trying to serve more brussels sprouts at our meals and am always looking for a variety of ways to serve them. Thanks for the great ideas.

    • dinkan53 profile image


      8 years ago from India

      Smaller sprouts are tastier and i love to have it in roasted form with salt and olive oil or as steamed form. Thanks for sharing the health benefits of brussels sprouts. Voted and shared.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      8 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      @ Dee aka Nonna - Thanks for your input and compliments.

      @ janshares - Appreciate your sparing time to read and appreciate. Thanks for stopping by.

      @ alocsin - thanks for reading. Appreciate the votes and sharing.

      @ rebecca - glad you liked the write up. Thanks for the visit.

      @ Gypsy - Thanks Rasma, for the read, compliments and sharing.

      @ Angelo - thanks for being here. Glad to see you.

      @ Sueswan - glad you know this small but very useful tip. Always a pleasure to see you.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      8 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      @ Ruchi - thanks for visiting.

      @ donnah - thanks for reading and sharing.

      @ lambservant - glad you like the information. thanks for stopping by.

      @ Brett - thanks for taking out time to read and share. Much appreciated.

      @ Life and Luxury - I do hope you try making Brussels sprouts the Indian way. Thanks for visiting.

      @ TT - Thanks for all the compliments. Appreciate your sparing time to read, comment and share.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Hi Rajan,

      I like brussels sprouts steamed. I did not know that they should be left to sit for five minutes before steaming.

      I thought of my dad when I read your hub. He was not a big vegetable eater but he loved brussels sprouts. :)

      Voted up and awesome

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Lots of good information. I usually buy my sprouts frozen and microwave, then add a few italian mix herbs to season.

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 

      8 years ago from Daytona Beach, Florida

      Another interesting and informative hub. Now we're talking about one of my absolutely favorite little round green veggies. Love these. Thanks for the additional information and passing this on.

    • rebeccamealey profile image

      Rebecca Mealey 

      8 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

      I love Brussel sprouts. Thanks for the reminder to get some soon and cook them up. I knew they were nutritious but WOW! What a lone list!

    • alocsin profile image

      Aurelio Locsin 

      8 years ago from Orange County, CA

      We actually cook these a lot -- my favorite way is broiling them with a bit of garlic. Gives them a slight crisp and makes them delicious. Voting this Up and Useful. SHARED.

    • janshares profile image

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      8 years ago from Washington, DC

      Thank you for this hub, rajan. I absolutely LOVE brussel sprouts, fresh or frozen. This was very helpful to me regarding medicinal value, some of which I was not aware, and cooking methods. I will keep these points in mind. Voted up and useful. The pics are gorgeous and thanks for the divider link.

    • Dee aka Nonna profile image

      Dee aka Nonna 

      8 years ago

      I love brussel sprouts and always knew they, like most green vegetables, are healthy but never realize just how healthy. Thanks for bringing all their benefits to light. My children loved them when they were little but by the time they became teenagers they would not touch them and as adults they have not changed their opinion....LOL. I have always loved them. The pictures of the recipes look great...will have to give them a try.

    • TToombs08 profile image

      Terrye Toombs 

      8 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

      omg, the roasted Brussels sprouts looked heavenly! Thank you for all the useful information and the amazing recipes, Rajan. Voted up and shared.

    • Life and Luxury profile image

      Life and Luxury 

      8 years ago from South Beach, FL

      I love these little suckers. I think I am going to try Brussels Sprouts the Indian way. I usually eat them lightly boiled, steamed, or roasted. Thanks for devoting a hub to one of my favorite veggies.

    • Brett.Tesol profile image

      Brett C 

      8 years ago from Asia

      Another very informative hub. These are a great vegetable to include in your diet. It is just a shame that they cause many people 'unpleasant side effects' lol ... some just seem to be able to clear a room very quickly after eating these healthy vegetables.

      Shared, up and useful.

    • lambservant profile image

      Lori Colbo 

      8 years ago from United States

      I am crazy for Brussels sprouts. I love the first YouTube recipe. Thanks for a wonderful and salivations hub.

    • donnah75 profile image

      Donna Hilbrandt 

      8 years ago from Upstate New York

      Brussel sprouts have a bad reputation, which led me to avoid them for most of my life. However, I tried them for the first time about a month ago. They were great! I will be eating these healthy little nuggets a lot more often. Great hub. Voted up and sharing.

    • Ruchi Urvashi profile image

      Ruchi Urvashi 

      8 years ago from Singapore

      Great information on brussel sprouts. I need to try out this vegetable. Well written.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      8 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      Thanks Deborah. I know I can count on your continued support. Always a pleasure to hear from you. Take care.

    • eHealer profile image


      8 years ago from Las Vegas

      thanks Rajan, I know it's not an easy answer, I just wanted your opinion.

      Thank you for your wonderful hubs and hard work in research!

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      8 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      @ rcrumple - Richard, thanks for reading even though you are not a big fan of this vegetable. Glad to know you got tickled with this video. Thanks for stopping by my friend.

      @ ehealer - well, this question is a tough nut to crack, Deborah. I'm not a nutritionist so I'd rather go by the various standards set for fat and other nutrient intake. That said, it also depends on the lifestyle, weight, age and most importantly the state of one's health.

      @ KDuBarry - nice to know you are thinking of giving it another shot. Thanks for the visit and share.

      @ Relationshipc - thanks for your input. I'm happy to note you found the hub useful. Thanks for visiting.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      8 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      @ Marlene - I'm glad you like the info in my hubs. Thanks for finding the recipes useful hope you try them out. Thanks for the compliments and I appreciate your visit.

      @ Jamie - Thanks Jamie for the visit, input and compliments. Much appreciated.

      @ Martie - thanks so much. I'm glad you found it informative.

      @ Vellur - Nithya, I'm glad you decided to give a try again. Thanks for all the kind words.

      @ Audrey - thank you. Appreciate your visit.

    • Relationshipc profile image


      8 years ago

      Awesome hub! We just had some Brussel Sprouts from our local farmers market, and I was wondering how nutritious they really I know! They pack a lot of good value for such tiny things. We steamed them, and unlike perrya, I love the smell of them. Probably because I grew up smelling cabbage rolls as a kid and I am familiar with that scent for holidays and fun times.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      I never cared for brussel sprouts, but my mom loves them a lot. Maybe I should give brussel sprouts another chance. Thanks for sharing, Rajan! Sharing this across twitter and the like.

    • eHealer profile image


      8 years ago from Las Vegas

      Hello Rajan! I had no idea that brussel sprouts were so good for you. I hated them as a kid, now I love them. Rajan, how much healthy fat do you think the average person needs daily. When I say healthy, I mean from lean sources, like cold water fish, avocados, small handful of nuts.

    • rcrumple profile image


      8 years ago from Kentucky

      Rajan -

      Great presentation, but I can't handle this vegetable. The taste is simply not to my liking at all. Great job of providing all the vital information and benefits. The video had me laughing. This person obviously has way too much money considering the home and kitchen size and appliances. Great Hub!

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 

      8 years ago from California

      I love Brussel's Sprouts! And some wonderful ideas here about what to do with them

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 

      8 years ago from Dubai

      I do not like brussel sprouts, but after reading your hub I will try eating them. Very useful hub. All your hubs are very useful and gives a lot of information that benefits everyone specially in the health point of view. Thanks for sharing such valuable information.

    • MartieCoetser profile image

      Martie Coetser 

      8 years ago from South Africa

      Rajan, this is an excellent and well-researched hub about brussels sprouts health benefits. I LOVE brussels sprouts!

    • Jamie Brock profile image

      Jamie Brock 

      8 years ago from Texas

      I have always loved Brussels sprouts..I haven't had them in a while but they really are the perfect diet food- no fat, filling and they taste good just by themselves.. at least in my opinion. I would usually eat the steamed. I've never tried them braised like described in your hub... but it sounds yummy. Thank you for sharing. Voting up and useful :)

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 

      8 years ago from USA

      You always have the most informative hubs. I learned a lot about the benefits of brussel sprouts. But, I never knew that brussel sprouts could cause swelling of the thyroid gland in some people. That's something good to know. As a child I could barely stand to eat brussel sprouts. Now, as an adult, they are one of my favorite vegetables. I simply must try the caramelized brussel sprouts. Thank you for the recipes.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      8 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting, perrya.

    • perrya profile image


      8 years ago

      Love them. But they so stink when cooking.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      8 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      Bill, I'm glad you're catching up, slowly but surely. It pleases me to know, thank you.

      You too have a wonderful weekend and thanks for reading.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      8 years ago from Olympia, WA

      We just harvested ours out of our garden....great crop this year. Finally I know something about one of your hubs. Thanks for the great information about health benefits. I'll remember that while I'm eating our sprouts.

      Have a great weekend my friend!

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      8 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      Hi Linda,

      Glad you found this useful and informative. I'm sure you'll like the Indian style brussels sprouts. Glad to see you and thanks for visiting.

    • lrc7815 profile image

      Linda Crist 

      8 years ago from Central Virginia

      I love brussel spouts but I learned a lot about them in this hub. The Indian recipe looks delicious and I will definitely give it a try. Thanks for good information and a new recipe!

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      8 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      Hi Carol,

      Leaving them a bit crunchy does leave more nutrients intact. However it definitely tastes better when cooked more. I'm glad you like my hubs. Thanks for the compliments and the visit.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      8 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      Hi Mycee,

      Yes, they are indeed cute looking. Thanks for coming by & sharing.

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 

      8 years ago from Arizona

      We eat these little gems often. I usually like veggies very crunchy but these do taste better with a little more cooking. I knew they had tons of vitamins but they are really healthful . Thanks for sharing all this information. I always enjoy reading your hubs. Voting UP.

    • unknown spy profile image

      Life Under Construction 

      8 years ago from Neverland

      Wow! this looks so cool! like tiny cabbage :)

      sharing this


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