Health Benefits 101: BROCCOLI

Broccoli is probably one of my favorite vegetables! I guess one of the reasons why is because of its vibrant green color that makes me want to dig in it as soon as I see it. But as I learn more about the foods that I eat, I’ve learned that this vegetable isn’t just nice to look at but it is packed with a lot of nutrients. Broccoli is low in sodium and calories, at about 31 calories per serving. It’s also a fat-free vegetable.

Broccoli is an edible green flowering head that is eaten as a vegetable. The plant belongs to the species that include cabbage, cauliflower, kale, Brussels sprouts, collard greens, savoy, and kohlrabi. Consumed raw or cooked, with common methods of preparation may it be boiled, steamed, and stir-fried. The most commonly eaten parts of it are the green or purple flowering heads, which are shaped like a tree, coming off a thick and edible stalk.

Did you know?

A cup of cooked broccoli offers as much vitamin C as an orange, and is a good source of beta-carotene. Broccoli contains vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, iron, magnesium, potassium, and zinc too. It also provides fiber and is low in calories.

Healthy Benefits of Broccoli

  1. Can Reduce Allergic Reaction and Inflammation

Broccoli has significant amounts of omega 3 fatty acids, which are well known as anti-inflammatory. Along with this, broccoli can also help people who are suffering from arthritis as broccoli contains sulforaphane, a chemical that blocks the enzymes that can cause joint destruction and hence lead to inflammation.

2. Improves Metabolism

Nutrients such as fiber, vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin K, folate, and vitamin A in broccoli assist in boosting body metabolism. Fiber, especially, shows a TEF (thermic effect of food) and increases your metabolic rate after eating.

3. Promotes Heart health

Broccoli can aid in heart health by helping to keep blood vessels strong. The sulforaphane in broccoli is also an anti-inflammatory and may be able to prevent or reverse damage to blood vessel linings caused by chronic blood sugar problems.

4. Helps slow down aging

One compound in broccoli, called nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN), has been found to offer anti-aging benefits. NMN produces another compound important for energy metabolism hence this compound prevents genetic changes that lead to premature aging.

5. Protect your skin from sun damage

Research indicates that bioactive compounds in broccoli may protect against UV radiation damage which leads to skin cancer. Broccoli is full of vitamin K, amino acids and folates, making it ideal for maintaining healthy skin immunity.

ADDITIONAL FACTS

Broccoli has an impressive nutritional profile. It is “high in fiber, very high in vitamin C and has potassium, B6 and vitamin A,” raved Victoria Jarzabkowski, a nutritionist with the Fitness Institute of Texas at the University of Texas at Austin. Broccoli is a good source of fibre and protein, and contains iron, potassium, calcium, selenium and magnesium as well as the vitamins A, C, E, K and a good array of B vitamins including folic acid. In addition with the many benefits of this amazing vegetable, below is a photo of the nutritional facts of broccoli.

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