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Health Benefits of Broccoli, Nutritional Value, and Recipes

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Plants are an excellent food source that is rich in nutrients and contains vital vitamins and minerals. One of the vegetable-based plants called broccoli, is considered an extremely nutritious food because of its many health advantages. Broccoli is scientifically called Brassica Oleracea. It is part of the cabbage group (Brassicaceae). Additionally, it is among the top nutritious and promising cruciferous vegetables.

Broccoli was originally in the east of Mediterranean. Then, it gained popularity in Italy. Even though it’s been origin of Italy for more than a century but it is now gaining popularity all over the world.

Broccoli is a vegetable that is winter-specific and is not readily available during summer. It does however, grow well at temperatures ranging from 18 and 23 degrees Celsius.

Broccoli is a collection of flowers that can be eaten. These blooms (heads) are arranged on a long edible stalk. They look like a tree. They are dark green in florets and mild green stalks. But, it is best to avoid any broccoli with yellowish hue when buying.

Broccoli is rich in vital nutrients vitamin A, C and the riboflavin. It also contains calcium and iron.

Broccoli is also low in calories, and is rich in antioxidants and fibres found in food. So, including broccoli in your diet can aid in preventing various illnesses.

Nutritional Properties of Broccoli

Broccoli is a very nutritious vegetable, it is low in carbohydrates and contains a variety of vital electrolytes, minerals, vitamins and phytonutrients.

Primary nutrients per 100gm of broccoli:

  • Energy 34 Kcal
  • Carbohydrate: 6.64 g
  • Protein: 2.82 g
  • Total Fat: 0.37g
  • Cholesterol : 0 mg
  • Dietary Fibre: 2.60 g

Vitamins:

  • Vitamin C: 89.2mg
  • Vitamin K: 0.17mg
  • Vitamin B9: 63 mcg
  • Vitamin B3: 0.639 mcg
  • Vitamin B5: 0.573 mcg
  • Vitamin B6: 0.175 mcg
  • Vitamin B2: 0.117 mcg
  • Vitamin B1: 0.071 mcg
  • Vitamin A: 623 IU
  • Vitamin E: 101.6 mcg

Minerals:

  • Calcium: 47 mg
  • Copper: 0.049mg
  • Iron: 0.73mg
  • Magnesium: 21mg
  • Manganese: 0.210mg
  • Selenium 2.5mcg
  • Zinc 0.41mg
  • Phosphorus: 66 mg

Potassium and electrolytes per 100g of broccoli:

  • Sodium: 33 mg
  • Potassium: 316 mcg
  • B-carotene 361 mg
  • B-crypto-xanthan: 1 mg
  • Lutein-zeaxanthin: 1403 mcg

Broccoli is among the most nutritious raw vegetables. Numerous health experts advocate its consumption because of its nutritional quantity. Additionally being a great antioxidant and combats free radicals.

Broccoli has also been identified as a great source of fibre from the diet as well as protein and vitamins such as A, C, and E, which are essential ingredients in any nutritious diet.

15 Proven Health Benefits of Broccoli

The consumption of broccoli in the diet can boost metabolic and biological activities. This makes it very beneficial for the entire human body.

1. Control Blood Sugar Levels

Broccoli is anti-diabetic as well as an antioxidant powerhouse that is rich in vital nutrients.

The most nutritious form of broccoli is the sprout form. The antioxidants found in broccoli sprouts lessen stress on cells and also repair pancreatic cell damage. In turn, it enhances insulin production and lowers blood sugar levels.

Research studies show broccoli sprouts can improve insulin resistance in patients suffering from Type 2 Diabetes. Therefore, eating fresh broccoli sprouts can lower blood sugar levels and regulates glucose levels in the blood.

2. Aids in Weight Loss

Broccoli is a great source of fiber and has anti-diabetic effects. It improves insulin sensitivity and aids to lose weight. Insulin resistance happens when the body’s insulin can not take in glucose. It’s important in weight growth. Broccoli lowers insulin resistance and helps with weight loss.

Furthermore, broccoli contains a variety of phytochemicals, also known as bioactive substances. They are beneficial in managing weight.

The bioactive compounds can target fat cells in your body, and help reduce the amount of fat. Therefore, broccoli can aid in significant weight loss through the chloroform, ethanol and active extracts. According to studies the ethanol and chloroform are anti-obesity substances as well as aiding with weight loss.

3. Gastroprotective Action

Gastric infections caused by Helicobacter Pylori (bacteria) are very common. The infections can lead to an alarming rate of gastric cancer.

Broccoli is a great supply of glucoraphanin. It transforms into bioactive anti-cancer substances like sulforaphane-glucosinolate. These active compounds fight bacteriostatics and work as antitumor drugs. This is why broccoli is a food source that protects against ulcers in the stomach as well as cancers that are caused by ulcers.

Incredibly, broccoli that has been sprouted contains 20 times more Sulforaphane (SGS) as compared to the mature vegetable. If you’re looking to reduce gastric problems make sure you add a sufficient quantity of broccoli (sprout form) to your daily meals.

4. Anti-cancer Properties

Broccoli has amazing anti-cancer properties. It is among the most potent vegetables for fighting cancer due to its many bioactive substances. The anti-cancer components found in broccoli include:

  • The glucosinolates (broken to form compounds such as indoles and nitriles, thiocyanates, and isothiocyanates)
  • Diindolylmethane
  • Selenium
  • Indole-3-Carbinol
  • Sulforaphane is a derivative of the glucoraphanin

The biologically active substances reduce the breast, bladder liver, lung prostate kidney, crown-gall colon, oral, as well as skin cancers. They shield cell DNA from damage.

DNA damage can be caused by the effects of oxidative stress, mutations, or changes in the environment. Furthermore, they assist in remove carcinogens and free radicals.

These substances also stimulate programed cell death (apoptosis) and help to ensure the regular functioning of our body. Additionally, they inhibit the formation of tumours.

A lab study indicates that broccoli reduces the risk of developing Leukaemia-like cells that are acutely lymphoblastic. So, broccoli is a source of medicinal and prophylactic properties.

A different study confirms the idea that eating broccoli daily could reduce the risk of certain cancers.

5. Fight Against Infectious Diseases

Broccoli isn’t just anti-carcinogenic. It also contains antiviral and antibacterial properties.

Many fungi, bacteria as well as parasites and viruses cause infections.

Studies reveal the presence of antimicrobial-specific peptides in broccoli flowers and leaves. Broccoli extracts also contain Ethyl Acetate and chloroform that are effective against a variety of kinds of bacteria.

Broccoli is also a good source of organic acids like malic and ascorbic acids which have antibacterial properties.

As per another study, 3,3′-diindolylmethane, a constituent of broccoli, is a potent modulator. It confers intrinsic immunity to infections caused by bacteria and viruses.

6. Fights Against Inflammation

Broccoli is a source of anti-inflammatory substances. Inflammation can be caused by the circulatory system of excessive Plasma C reactive proteins in the body.

Reviews on broccoli reveal an increase in C-reactive protein in plasma (CRP) amounts by up to 48 percent. This means that eating broccoli can help reduce inflammation.

Broccoli is also rich in kaempferol an active flavonoid, which has anti-inflammatory capabilities. In addition, sulforaphane found contained in the broccoli plant is an effective tool for healing that helps prevent rheumatoid joint.

In the same way, different research research have concluded that the chemical makeup of broccoli is what makes it an anti-inflammatory.

7. Rich in Antioxidants

Broccoli is an excellent source of antioxidants. It is a rich source of essential vitamins such as A, C, K E, B-complex, and C which can improve antioxidant levels in stressed patients. If you suffer from deficiencies in any of these vitamins you must include broccoli in your diet.

Research studies have shown broccoli’s potential to lower the levels of oxidative stress. This is due to antioxidants such as zeaxanthin and lutein that prevent cell damage and enhance eyesight.

Broccoli also has polyphenols and ascorbic acids which protect the Red Blood Cell Membranes by eliminating free radicals.

So, broccoli’s active ingredients as well as chemical extracts help to reduce DNA damage through absorption of oxygen radicals.

8. Liver Protection

Broccoli extracts are good for the liver and aid in removing toxic substances from your body. It also decreases the effects of serum enzymes and bilirubin which can cause harm to the liver.

Carbon tetrachloride triggers the oxidative stress, and creates reacting free radicals. It can also cause damage to the liver. But, eating broccoli can help fight carbon tetrachloride that is present in the liver.

Research suggest that broccoli can protect against build-up of toxins inside the liver. So, it is possible to use it to treat certain liver diseases. This is due to its beneficial effects on the liver cells. Additionally, flavonoids and sulfur-containing combinations of broccoli aid in preventing damage to the liver.

9. Improvement in Heart Health

Heart diseases are a common occurrence and are among the main causes of death. Broccolis that are rich in fibre are full of Sulforaphane. It helps reduce oxidative free radical damage.

Consuming broccoli is beneficial against heart conditions such as stroke and hypertension. Broccoli reduces LDL levels as well as serum cholesterol levels and triglycerides. It also boosts HDL levels, which results in a decrease in the risk of coronary heart disease.

The cleansing effect of antioxidants make broccoli cardioprotective and helps to block harmful stimuli to the heart. Therefore, it is possible to conclude that broccoli can improve the health of your heart.

10. Promotes Digestion

A healthy gut microbiome and fibre will ensure a healthy and healthy colon. Broccoli is a good source of antioxidants and fibre. Therefore, a high-fiber diet like broccoli help to improve the function of your gut and helps prevent constipation.

Broccoli also has anti-inflammatory properties that help restore the healthy resident bacteria of the colon. It also increases the frequency of bowel movements.

11. Potent Immunomodulatory Actions

Broccoli is a major ingredient in sulforaphane as well as indole-3-car. This is why it has potent immunomodulatory properties.

A few studies confirm that consumption of broccoli could boost white blood cells as well as macrophages, and dramatically reduce the levels of inflammatory cytokine.

It aids in improving the an immune system’s innate response by increasing the production of bone marrow cells as well as antibodies. Additionally, sulforaphane from broccoli is a component of positive immunomodulatory functions.

12. Helps With Healthy Pregnancy

A mother-to-be needs nutrients and broccoli is a good source of them. This is why it positively impacts the mother’s as well as the baby’s development and growth. Broccoli is an ingredient in B-complex vitamins. These vitamins can improve a baby’s well-being.

Anaemia is among the most expected characteristics of pregnant women. But, adding broccoli to your diet can help stop it. Then, studies show that broccoli improves brain function and the cognitive development of the infant.

13. Prevents Premature Ageing and Sun Damage

Excessive exposure to UV rays can cause skin cancer. The alarming increase in skin cancers is due to the loss of the oxygen layer, the pollution, and the predicted global warming.

These environmental changes can lead to premature ageing as well as sun damage. The accumulation of reactive free radicals can cause an increase in oxidative stress.

Broccoli’s bioactive component sulforaphane protects against carcinogenic UV radiation and changes to the skin.

It can be effective in preventing the development of tumours. Research have also suggested that the inclusion of broccoli into your diet can improve metabolic functions in the body.

14. Improves Bone and Joint Health

According to research broccoli is a great food source to increase joint and bone health. It’s a great source of vitamin K C A, calcium zinc, and phosphorus. These nutrients are vital to can strengthen joints and bones.

In addition the antioxidant sulforaphane present in broccoli can help aid in preventing osteoarthritis. There is however no definitive evidence to support that it is the similar.

15. Enhances Oral Health

Vitamin C, calcium, and Kaempferol found in broccoli can help maintain dental and oral health.

Healthy Recipes Using Broccoli

Broccoli has numerous health benefits. But, these benefits can decrease when boiling the vegetable. Thus, the preparation method plays an essential part.

#1 Roasted Garlic Lemon Broccoli

Servings: 4

Preparation Time 10 minutes

Ingredients:

  • Broccoli (cut into bite-sized florets) 1
  • Extra-virgin olive oil 1 teaspoon
  • Sea salt 1 teaspoon
  • Ground black pepper 1 teaspoon
  • Garlic 1 clove
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice

Method:

  • Pre-heat the oven to 400°F.
  • Mix broccoli florets and the extra-virgin olive oil and sea salt garlic and pepper in the bowl.
  • Place them in an even layer on an oven sheet.
  • Bake the florets for eight up to 10 mins in the oven that is preheated. Repeat until they’re soft.
  • Make a small puncture using a knife to test.
  • Then, transfer the food to the serving dish.
  • Make sure to add enough lemon juice for an energizing, tart flavor.

#2 Stir-fried Broccoli

Servings: 4

Preparation Time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:

  • Broccoli (cut into small florets of medium size) 1 large size
  • Olive oil 1 tablespoon
  • Red pepper flake – – 1/2 teaspoon crushed
  • Salt – As per taste
  • The lemon and the oregano (optional)

Method:

  • Rinse the broccoli florets, then dry them
  • The olive oil is heated in a large fry pan (normal temperatures)
  • Add oregano and red pepper and let it sizzle for one minute.
  • In the pan for about 5-7 minutes.
  • Once the dish is crispy and cooked After cooking, sprinkle lemon and salt.
  • Serve hot

#3 Broccoli spinach soup

Servings: 2

Time to prepare: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • Broccoli (cut into pieces) 1 large size
  • Spinach (chopped) – 2 cups
  • Butter – 1 Tbsp
  • Water – 1 cup
  • Garlic 1 clove
  • Salt and pepper as per your taste
  • Milk (unsweetened) 1 cup [to make it keto-friendly you can use almond milk or coconut milk]
  • Paste of Almond/Cashew – 1 Tbsp
  • Chopped onions 1/2 cup

Method:

  • Put butter in a saucepan and allow it to melt.
  • Add garlic, and cook for a few seconds , until it becomes golden brown.
  • Then, add the onion to the pan, and mix until it turns translucent.
  • Add broccoli, and simmer for about 5 mins.
  • Add some water, then cover it for a couple of minutes until it is soft and easily pinched by an instrument such as a fork.
  • Include Spinach and Almond/cashew, salt, milk, and pepper, and let it mix.
  • Boil the liquid and switch off the flame.
  • After cooling for a few minutes, put the contents into the blender and make the smooth purée from it.
  • Cook the soup for another 2 minutes and then the soup is done.

Broccoli is among the vegetables that are most nutritious. It is a great choice to eat in its raw form or cook it. But, it is important to cook it with care to avoid loss of nutrition. The best method to cook broccoli is steam them, stir fry or bake them.

But boiling broccoli can break down the nutritional value and produces a peculiar smell.

Salty cooking eliminates the vital enzymes that breakdown the nutrients into cancer-fighting agents. Therefore make sure you cook your broccoli properly and take advantage of its health advantages.

Broccoli – Precautions and Possible Side Effects

Broccoli can be safely eat and doesn’t have any negative effect. However, it could have some potential adverse consequences.

  • The high fiber content in broccoli can hinder bowel function and cause gas. This can happen as a result of excessive consumption. But, cruciferous vegetables may cause gas However, their health benefits far outweigh any discomfort.
  • If you’re on prescription medication, you must consult with your physician prior to eating broccoli. Additionally, those who are taking blood thinners must avoid eating broccoli since the presence of vitami N K within it could hinder the effectiveness of the drug.
  • If you suffer from liver problems it is advised not to eat too much broccoli. The presence of different cytochromes in broccoli can affect the treatment for liver disease.
  • If you are suffering from low levels of iodine within your body or reside in an area with a high incidence of disease, like mountains, you could be at the risk of developing Hypothyroidism. So, it is recommended to limit consumption of broccoli.

Conclusion

Broccoli is among the vegetables that is under-explored and has numerous essential nutrients and a high therapeutic value.

It’s additionally low in calories and contains a lot of nutrients, fibre, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, all of which offer numerous health benefits. Therefore, you should include broccoli to your daily diet.

Broccoli is a popular vegetable in many countries. However, it’s not yet widely cultivated in India. In addition there is a need for further research into this superfood.

However, studies published demonstrate the tremendous positive effects of broccoli for curative anti-cancer properties that merit a closer look.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q. What are the advantages of broccoli?

A. Broccoli contains anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory properties and weight loss benefits in addition to many others.

Q. Do you think it is okay to eat a serving of broccoli each day?

A. Yes, it’s okay to consume broccoli on a daily basis. Consuming broccoli regularly may lower cholesterol levels, help our body’s naturally detoxifying process and regulate blood sugar levels, and more. However, over-consumption of this broccoli is detrimental as it can cause constipation and weight gain.

Q. What effect does broccoli has on your body?

A. Broccoli is a great source of antioxidants that help reduce the stress of oxidation in the body , and lower the risk of developing degenerative illnesses. In addition it also has antiviral and antibacterial properties that keep disease at low risk.

Q. Does eating broccoli cause you to gain weight?

A. Actually, no broccoli is a low-calorie vegetable that helps in decreasing weight. While excessive consumption could lead to weight gain, it’s not recommended due to the risk of leading to the development of other chronic illnesses.

Q. Is broccoli a Superfood?

A. Yes. It is a rich source of nutrients and has lots of benefits for health, we could be calling it superfood.

Q. Who is not allowed to eat broccoli?

A. If you suffer from hypothyroidism and you are taking prescribed medications You can consult your physician in case you would like to include this nutritious vegetable into your diet. Additionally, it is part of the cruciferous group, therefore it could cause gastric issues and bloating in certain people.

Q. Are broccoli’s health benefits due to its high nutrient content?

A. Yes. The numerous nutrients, vitamins and fiber content of broccoli make it among the healthiest vegetables.

Q. Is broccoli good for skin?

A. Broccoli is packed with vitamin A K, C and and B which helps protect your skin and gives it the appearance of a healthy glow. Also, it contains lutein , a carotenoid that protects against the effects of oxidative damage.

Q. Do you think broccoli is good for females?

A. Yes. broccoli has numerous benefits for women. A 100-gram serving of broccoli is a source of the equivalent of 47 milligrams calcium which strengthens bones for women. It also helps prevent osteoporosis in pregnant women.

Q. Is broccoli a good food to lose weight?

A. A. Consuming excessive amounts of broccoli can increase your weight.

Q. Are you able to eat broccoli for your stomach?

A. Yes, broccoli is an abundance of fibre as well as antioxidants. It is great for digestion because it is a gastro-protective agent and helps in bowel health.

Q. Is broccoli a source of carbs or protein?

A. Broccoli is very low in both of these nutrients. A 100-gram portion of broccoli is comprised of 6.64 grams of carbs as well as 2.82 grams of protein.

Q. What is the amount of protein contained in 100 grams of broccoli?

A. A serving of broccoli, i.e. 100g of broccoli, contains 2.82 grams of protein.

Q. What’s the carb count per 100g of broccoli?

A. Serving, i.e. 100 grams broccoli, contains 6.64 grams of carbs.

Q. How nutritious is broccoli cooked?

A. 100 grams of steaming broccoli is packed with 34 kcal energy, 6.64 g carbohydrates, 2.82 grams in protein. 0.37 grams fat as well as 2.60 grams of fiber.

Q. What are the calories of the 250 kilograms of broccoli?

A. The 250 grams of Broccoli contains 85 calories.

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