What Benefits Do You Get From Broccoli?
Broccoli is one of the great-tasting vegetables which is rich in vitamins and minerals, in addition to dietary fiber and its low calories. It belongs to a family of cruciferous vegetables (flower vegetables) whose relatives are cabbage, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, cress, and similar green leafy flower vegetables.
Sulforophane, a sulfur-containing compound is abundant in broccoli. It has anti-cancer and anti-microbial properties that reduce the risk of cancers such as lung, stomach, breast, and prostate cancers.
A high intake of broccoli reduces the risk of heart disease, cataract, and aggressive cancer. The new “5-a-Day for Better Health” program supported by the National Cancer Institute is designed to encourage Americans to boost their daily consumption of fruits and vegetables, especially broccoli, from three to a least five times each day.
Vitamins, Minerals, Phytonutrients Found in Broccoli
Vitamins: A, C, E, K, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, Niacin, Folate, Riboflavin, Pantothenic Acid
Minerals: Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Manganese, Copper, Selenium, Zinc
Phytonutrients: Beta-carotene, Crypto-xanthin-ß, Lutein-zeaxanthin
Health Benefits of Broccoli
- High in Fiber
- High in Protein
- Lowers blood sugar level
- Helps prevent heart disease
- Helps fight high blood pressure
- Helps prevent cancer
- Helps prevent cataracts
- Repairs skin damage
- Detoxifies the body
Cooking ways to preserve the nutrients in broccoli
In order not to alter the composition of compounds present in broccoli, mild steam or gentle braise should be done. Boiling or microwaving destroys the heat sensitive vitamins like vitamin C, some phytonutrients, and folates.
Because the scientific evidence for the cancer-fighting effects of fruits and vegetables is growing.
Although fruits and vegetables are helpful in fighting many types of cancer, a recent review suggested that a fruity and leafy diet seems to be most effective against lung, mouth, stomach, colon, rectal, bladder and cervical cancers.
Researchers state that for adults who don’t drink heavily and don’t smoke, the one choice that seems to influence their long-term health prospects more than any other is their diet.
The director of the “5-a-Day” program, Jerianne Heimendinger, estimates that if all Americans started eating four or more daily servings of fruits or vegetables, about 25% of all diet-related cancers could be prevented.