Broccoli is one of the healthiest vegetables we can consume, and its merit is not limited to its head, but its leaves, sprouts, and stalks are highly beneficial too.
It was initially cultivated as an edible crop in the northern Mediterranean region starting in about the 6th century B.C., and in the Roman Empire, it was valued as a unique food that promotes longevity and overall health.
It offers numerous health benefits, such as:
- Improved wound healing
- Increased metabolism and weight management
- Improved cognitive function, even into old age
- Improved eye health
- Detoxified blood
- Balanced pH level and regulated blood acidity
- Improved hormonal health and adrenal gland functioning
- Lowered blood pressure and cholesterol levels
- Slowed aging
- Improved teeth and gum health
- Improved bone health
- Prevention of prematurely aged, irritated skin
- Improved fertility
It offers a myriad of other health benefits too, so here are some additional facts you need to know:
- Broccoli is high in antioxidants and flavonoids, so it fortifies the immune system and fights inflammation
- Broccoli is rich in glucoraphanin, which the body turns into sulforaphane, an antioxidant which fights oxidative stress and regulates cholesterol
- Sulforaphane improves the function of the liver and prevents liver issues
- The high fiber content regulates blood sugar and improves the function of the digestive system
- broccoli lowers insulin resistance linked to type 2 diabetes
- It has powerful cancer protective properties against cancers of the breast, prostate, stomach, colorectal, kidney, and bladder
Broccoli is undoubtedly a superfood, but its excessive consumption can lead to harmful effects in some people:
- In people with a sensitive digestive system, as it can lead to flatulence
- People suffering from hypothyroidism, since it is a goitrogenic food, and can affect the absorption of thyroid hormone T4
- In people who take blood-thinners, as it is high in vitamin K
Make sure you eat the broccoli raw or shortly steamed, as high temperatures weaken its nutritional value. Note that raw broccoli contains tenfold the number of antioxidants compared to broccoli steamed for more than three minutes.
Moreover, consider the following facts:
- 100 g of Raw Broccoli Leaves contains 93 mg vitamin C, 72 mcg folate, 47 mg calcium, 25 mg magnesium, 68 mg phosphorus
- 100g of Raw Broccoli Stalks provides 93 mg vitamin C, 71 mcg folate, 48 mg calcium, 25 mg magnesium, and 66 mg phosphorous
- 100g of Raw Broccoli Head has 89 mg vitamin C, 63 mcg folate, 47 mg calcium, 21 mg magnesium, and 66 mg phosphorus
You can add broccoli leaves to your smoothies and salads, or peel broccoli stalks and prepare them as broccoli heads. Then, enjoy the taste and numerous benefits of this fantastic veggie!