Last Updated December 20th, 2021
What is Broccoli?
Broccoli is a green vegetable which looks like a miniature tree. The top flowery part, as well as the stalks, can be consumed as a vegetable. It is a cruciferous vegetable which has several benefits. Broccoli belongs to the vegetable group or vegetable family of cabbage, cauliflower, Brussels, kale. Collard greens, rutabaga. Broccoli has a very low-calorie content but it is filled with various nutrients. Broccolis have various types as well. Mainly there are three varieties of Broccoli:
– Sprouting Broccoli
– Purple Cauliflower
Why is Broccoli called a superfood?
Broccoli is rich in plethora variety of nutrients and minerals.it is loaded with fibre, antioxidants and loads of vitamin C. Broccoli is one of the healthiest veggies due to the nutritional values that it has. It has various health benefits too that help in fighting cancer, preventing diabetes, developing good immunity, etc.
Vitamin C content in Broccoli even helps in promoting the absorption of iron and calcium. Broccoli is a cruciferous vegetable which helps in regulating the blood pressure of an individual. The better absorption of iron and calcium helps in maintaining good immunity as well as the bone health is aided, respectively.
What are the nutrients present in Broccoli?
There are various minerals and nutrients present in Broccoli.some of the most common nutrients and minerals present in a cup(91 grams) of Broccoli are elaborated in the chart below.
|Vit A||11% of DV|
|Vit B9||14% of DV|
|Vit C||135% of DV|
|Vit K||116% of DV|
|Potassium||8% of DV|
|Phosphorus||6% of DV|
|Selenium||3% of DV|
|Manganese||10% of DV|
|Magnesium||6% of DV|
|Iron||4% of DV|
|calcium||4% of DV|
|Zinc||3% of DV|
What are the other plant compounds present in Broccoli?
There are several other plant compounds which are present in Broccoli. It has a very high content of the plant compounds which have various significant health benefits. Some of the most important plant compounds which are present in Broccoli are as follows:
It is one of the most abundantly found plant compounds present in Broccoli. Sulforaphane is highly helpful in preventing various kinds of cancer.
Like Sulforaphane, Indole-3-carbinol is also very essential for preventing various kinds of cancers. It is found in almost every cruciferous vegetables.
Carotenoids have a high content of lutein, zeaxanthin and beta carotene as well. These are highly beneficial for maintaining better eye health.
It is an antioxidant which has several health benefits. This antioxidant called kaempferol helps in regulating heart functions and hence prevents heart diseases. It also provides protection against many kinds of cancer, inflammation and allergies.
Quercetin is an antioxidant which is really helpful in regulating the blood pressure of an individual. It helps in maintaining lower blood pressure. In the individuals having higher blood pressure, quercetin helps in lowering the blood pressure.
What are the health benefits of Broccoli?
There are various health benefits of Broccoli since it is rich in a plethora of vitamins and minerals. Besides these vitamins and minerals, Broccoli is a storehouse of essential plant compounds too which have many health benefits. Some of the most common health benefits of Broccoli are discussed below.
Prevention of Cancer
Broccoli is a cruciferous vegetable that is highly rich in several vitamins, minerals and plant compounds. Like every cruciferous vegetable, Broccoli is effective in preventing cancers. Broccoli contains Sulforaphane which is a sulphur-containing plant compound and gives the bitter taste to Broccoli. Sulforaphane inhibits the functions of the enzyme called Histone Deacetylase(HDAC) which is responsible for the progression of the cancer cells. Sulforaphane finds its use in slowing or delaying cancer in an individual.
The Melanoma, Esophageal, Prostrate and Pancreatic cancers can be prevented or delayed by the regular consumption of Broccoli. The presence of Vitamin B9 or Folate in Broccoli can be highly helpful in preventing breast cancer in women. It is also helpful for preventing various other cancers such as colon, stomach, pancreatic, and cervical cancers.
Maintaining bone health
The high content of essential vitamins such as Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin K and essential minerals such as Phosphorous, Calcium, Zinc are very important for maintaining good bone health in an individual. Vitamin K present in Broccoli provides for improving the calcium absorption in the body an individual and hence it is very helpful for maintaining the good health of bones and prevent any fractures or other disorders related to bones. The Sulforaphane content in Broccoli is very helpful in preventing the medical condition called osteoarthritis.
The ageing process in an individual occurs due to reduced metabolic functioning and oxidative stress. Broccoli can reduce oxidative stress since it is rich in various antioxidants. Antioxidants help in the removal or the neutralization of the free radicals or the molecules which causes various cellular damages. The plant compound called Sulforaphane plays the role of an antioxidant and helps in delaying the process of ageing in an individual.
Collagen is the main element which helps in maintaining good skin health. Vitamin C aids the formation of Collagen and hence Broccoli is extremely essential for healthy skin. Other vitamins like Vitamin A and Vitamin E are also responsible for fresh and healthy skin.
Improves digestion and helps in detoxification
Consumption of Broccoli is proven to be very helpful in improving the digestion process. It increases metabolism due to various essential Vitamins present in it. The high content of fibre in the Broccoli helps in maintaining an excellent roughage. The individuals who consume Broccoli regularly hardly face any difficulty in defecating i.e. the high fibre content helps in preventing constipation. The risk of colon inflammation is also reduced by the consumption of Broccoli. Hence Broccoli is extremely beneficial for maintaining great gut health.
Controlling Blood Sugar level
The high content of fibre and the antioxidants are mainly responsible for helping in maintaining a low blood sugar level. Broccoli has certainly been helpful in decreasing the insulin resistance in an individual having Type 2 Diabetes.
Reduction of Cholesterol
Regular consumption of Broccoli can be extremely helpful in decreasing the levels of the “bad cholesterol” i.e. LDL(Low-Density Lipoprotein). The high fibre content in Broccoli also provides for promoting and maintaining a healthy of HDL(High-Density Lipoprotein). By reducing the LDL levels in the body, Broccoli automatically aids in preventing various heart diseases and disorders such as heart attacks, atherosclerosis etc.
Promotes healthy brain functioning
Broccoli has a high content of the plant compound called Sulforaphane which is a bioactive compound. The plant compound called kaempferol present in Broccoli aids in the reduction of inflammation of the neural tissue which can otherwise result in stroke-like events. The risks of brain injuries are lowered to a greater extent due to the Kaemferol present in Broccoli.
Maintains a healthy immune system
Vitamin C is a very vital nutrient which helps in the perfect functioning of our immune system. A daily intake of 100-200 mg of vitamin C is helpful for preventing as well as treating various infections and illnesses such as obesity, diabetes, gastrointestinal diseases, stroke, hypertension, etc. Broccoli is the source of 85% of the regular dosage of Vitamin C for a healthy person. Hence regular consumption of Broccoli can be highly helpful for promoting a better immunity system in an individual.
Promotes oral health
Broccoli is rich in the nutrients and minerals which are essential for maintaining good oral health. Vitamin C and calcium are the two most important nutrients which are required for maintaining a healthy oral condition since these help in reducing the risks of periodontal diseases. Flavonoid content in Broccoli called Kaempferol also helps in the prevention of periodontitis. The risks of oral cancer are reduced due to the Sulforaphane content in Broccoli. It is also known for removing plaque and whitening the teeth of an individual.
Supports a healthy pregnancy
During pregnancy, the body of the mother as well as the unborn requires a large array of essential nutrients and minerals. Broccoli consists of the essential vitamins which are important for a healthy pregnancy. The development and maturity of the fetal spinal cord and brain are initiated by Vitamin B9 or Folate. The consumption of Broccoli by the mother can also help to ensure a healthier cognitive development of the newborn.
Protection of skin from the UV rays
The Bioactive compounds such as phenolics, glucosinolates, isothiocyanates, and ascorbic acid, etc are very essential in protecting the skin of an individual against UV(Ultraviolet Rays). Various antioxidants in Broccoli are very essential for preventing the development of any malignant tumour growth and hence prevents skin cancer in an individual.
Improves pain relief in fibromyalgia
Broccoli is extremely helpful in reducing the pain related to the condition of Fibromyalgia. Intake of ascorbigen along with Broccoli powder can be highly helpful for the reduction of musculoskeletal pain and the other symptoms related to Fibromyalgia such as mood swings, memory loss, fatigue, etc.
Does Broccoli help in weight loss?
Broccoli has a very high content of fibre which helps in keeping a person full for a very long period of time. Hence consuming Broccoli doesn’t make a person feel hungry for a long time which helps in cutting down on eating junk foods as well as foods with high calories. The antioxidants flush out the harmful toxins from the body and the vitamins are very helpful for improving the metabolic system. Since the nutrients present in Broccoli are very helpful in increasing the metabolic rate, it is very helpful for weight loss. Adding Broccoli in a correct amount in your regular diet can take you a long way
What are the side effects of overeating Broccoli?
Generally, 2 to 2.5 cups of cooked Broccoli are suggested to be eaten by an adult on a regular basis. In the case of raw Broccoli, you can eat a little more than 2-2.5 cups.
There are various side effects of overeating Broccoli. Some of the most common side effects of overeating Broccoli are as follows:
- Broccoli is very rich in Vitamin K which is responsible for the clotting of blood. If you are consuming blood thinners, in that case, consuming excessive Broccoli can result in various complications related to the effectiveness of the blood thinner medicines on your body. It is very necessary to keep a check on the amount of consumption of Vitamin K.
- Broccoli, when consumed in a larger amount than necessary, can result in gas and upset your bowel movement. Irritable Bowel Syndrome(IBS) is a very common condition related to the overconsumption of Broccoli.
- Kidneys are the organs which are responsible for flushing out the excess phosphorus from the body. If you have kidney problems, there might be a phosphorous build-up in your blood which can lead to several heart diseases and disorders.
- High levels of Goitrogen(substances which interfere with the iodine uptake by the thyroid gland and inhibit the production of the thyroid hormones) can have harmful effects on the thyroid gland.
5 healthy and tasty Broccoli Recipies
Broccolis have a sour taste due to the sulphur compounds. But this nutritious food has many health benefits if consumed in the correct amount. There are various ways of making tasty cuisines of Broccoli. Besides healthy, some of the tastiest Broccoli cuisines are as follows:
The ingredients required are:
- 8 ounces of bacon
- 5 cups of Small Broccoli Florets
- 1 cup of mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon of Apple cider Vinegar
- 3/4th of a cup filled with raisins
- 1/4th cup of sugar
- 1/2 cup of sunflower kernels
- 1/3 cup of chopped onions
- You have to cut the bacon into very small pieces. Cook them over medium heat till it becomes crisp.
- Drain the fried bacon pieces on a paper towel.
- You can use a large saucepan to boil some salted water.
- Add Broccoli and blanch. Let them boil until they look light green and becomes even softer.
- Boil them well for about three minutes before draining the water out. Run the boiled Broccoli and blanch under cold water and drain the water again.
- Take a mixing bowl and mix mayonnaise, vinegar, onions, sugar and raisins. Pour all the boiled Broccoli in this mixture and blend it very well.
- Refrigerate the whole mixture for an hour.
- Before serving the salad, add the bacon pieces and the sunflower kernels.
Parmesan Roasted Broccoli
The ingredients required
- 4 cups of Broccoli florets
- 3 tablespoon of olive oil
- 1/2 tablespoon of garlic powder. You can also use Italian Seasoning of equal parts.
- Dried oregano and dried basil
- Salt and pepper for taste
- 3 tablespoons of finely minced parmesan cheese
- 1 tablespoon of well-chopped fresh parsley
- Cooking spray
- 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
- Lemon wedges(optional garnishing)
- Heat the oven before starting to cook. Heat the sheet pan over 450 degrees after coating the pan with cooking spray.
- Add olive oil, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper with the Broccoli florets places inside a gallon-sized freezer bag.
- Shake it properly after sealing the bag. This helps in coating the Broccoli florets very evenly.
- After mixing it properly, pour all the Broccoli on the sheet pan in a single layer.
- Bake it for 20 minutes and keep stirring in between
- After baking it for 20 minutes, remove the pan and sprinkle some parsley over the Broccoli. You can sprinkle some grizzled Parmesan cheese and drip some lemon juice over the Broccoli.
- You can also garnish the dish using lemon wedges.
The ingredients required are:
- Kosher salt
- Extra virgin olive oil
- 1 bunch f tough Broccoli rabe. All the non-leafy steams have to be removed
- 3 cloves of smashed garlic
- Crushed red pepper flakes
- Take a large pot and boil salted water. Boil the Broccoli rabes in the boiling water for 1 minute.
- Take a bowl of well-salted ice water. After boiling the Broccoli rabes in the hot boiling water, drop the Broccoli rabes in the cold water.
- Drain the ice water as the Broccoli gets cool. Let the Broccoli dry.
- Use a saute pan and coat it with olive oil.
- Add some smashed garlic and crushed red pepper together and cook it over medium heat.
- Remove the garlic once it becomes brownish and aromatic.
- Add the Broccoli rabe and add some more olive oil if required.
- Add some pepper according to the desired taste, before serving.
Broccoli cheese soup
- 4 flowery heads of Broccoli which should be cut into 1-inch pieces
- Olive oil
- Black pepper which is freshly ground
- 4 ounces or 1 stick of unsalted butter
- 1 whole onion
- 1/3 cup of flour
- 4 cups of milk
- Pinch Nutmeg
- 3 cups of grated cheese such as Cheddar, sharp Cheddar, jack, etc.
- 1 cup of chicken broth(optional)
You should preheat the oven over 375-degree Fahrenheit.
- Take 2 cups of Broccoli florets and mince it into half thoroughly.
- Add olive oil to the Broccoli.
- Sprinkle some salt and pepper and mix it well.
- Place all the Broccoli on a baking sheet in one layer. Keep the cut side of the Broccoli down. Keep baking the Broccoli florets until they become crisp and darker in colour. Generally, on baking them for a longer time, Broccoli turns into a brownish colour.
- Use a pot and melt the butter in the pot over medium heat.
- Chop some onions and add them into it the pot and cook them till they become soft enough. Keep cooking the onions for 3 to 4 minutes.
- Sprinkle some flour on the top.
- Stir the mixture and blend it properly till the flour is absorbed completely. Keep mixing it for a minute.
- Add the milk after that and then the nutmeg.
- Place the Broccoli in it and add salt and pepper. Cover the pot and let it cook over low heat.
- Cook it for 20 to 30 minutes. Keep stirring it in the intervals of cooking and stir a bit cheese and let it melt.
- Add salt and pepper according to the desired taste.
- You can use a potato masher to mash the Broccoli a bit.
- You can add some chicken broth as well for thinning the soup.
- Roasted Broccoli and grated cheese can be used for garnishing purposes.
Chicken and Broccoli Stir-Fry
- 1 pound of cubed chicken breasts i.e. 2 breasts
- 3 white, thinly sliced scallions
- 2 tablespoon of sugar
- 1 tablespoon of dark sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon of soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon of dry sherry
- 2 cloves of minced garlic
- Peeled ginger chopped 1 inch per piece
- Kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon of cornstarch
- Freshly ground pepper
- 1/3 cup of water
- 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil
- 5 to 6 cups of Broccoli florets and sliced stalks
- 3/4 o 1 teaspoon of red chilli flakes(optional)
- Toasted sesame seeds(optional)
- 1 tablespoon of hoisin sauce
- Jasmine rice( optional)
- Toss the chicken taking a medium bowl. Add white scallions, sugar, sesame oil, sherry, soy sauce, about half of garlic, half of the ginger, 1 teaspoon of cornstarch and 1 teaspoon of salt. Marinate the whole mixture at room temperature for 15 minutes.
- Take a small bowl and mix 1 tablespoon of cornstarch with 1/3rd of a cup of water.
- Take a nonstick skillet and heat it over a higher flame.
- Add a tablespoon of vegetable oil and heat. Fry Broccoli steams in this oil for 30 seconds.
- Use the remaining Broccoli florets and add garlic and ginger. Blend the mixture well with 2 tablespoons of water, 1/4th teaspoon salt and some black pepper as well. Fry it till it becomes crisp and bright green in colour. And then transfer it to the plate.
- Add some chicken and red pepper flakes in 2 teaspoons of vegetable oil in the skillet.
- Stir-fry it until the raw colour of the chicken is gone. Keep cooking it for 3 minutes until it turns brownish.
- Add some hoisin sauce to the Broccoli and toss it in the pan to heat it through.
- Use the cornstarch mixture now.
- Add some more water for making the sauce thinner.
- Add some salt and pepper for the taste.
- Before serving it, you can add some sesame seeds. You can also serve it with steamed rice.
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