The first advice of any nutritionist is to introduce broccoli in any balanced and healthy diet. This advice should be respected because the broccoli is in the top 10 of the world’s healthiest food and broccoli health benefits are hardly equaled by other vegetables.
If we talk about the nutritional intelligence of the Mediterranean countries, there is a strong argument for which they can be considered more than inspired in the kitchen, and not just because they invented the diet that offers the greatest hope of life but because they made of the broccoli a superstar of the culinary preparations.
Broccoli: Health Benefits
The nutritional profile of this plant is truly impressive. Broccoli contains soluble and insoluble fiber in large quantities, vitamin C in huge amounts, and vitamin K, which is extremely necessary for a good blood circulation.
The Vitamin C in broccoli, which is found by 150% more than the usual daily dose, is a great help for the immune system to fight against flu’s symptoms. Another feature of the broccoli is the phytonutrients found in its composition. These phytonutrients significantly reduce the risk of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer.
And because it is a so popular vegetable, there are dozens of studies that have been conducted on this subject.
The studies found out that broccoli prevents arthritis, a degenerative disease. The substance called sulforaphane blocks the destruction of the cartilages because it intercepts a molecule that produces a local inflammation.
Another study shows that broccoli extract applied directly to the skin is significantly reducing the devastating effects of the ultraviolet rays, and so broccoli is a real protection against skin cancers.
Inside the blood vessels, the broccoli helps develop enzymes that protect their internal structure. It also reduces the impact of the molecules that destroy the vessels.
All the studies say that if you eat broccoli only three times a month, you may reduce your risk of developing bladder cancer by 40% because of a broccoli-containing enzyme, called myrosinase, changes the sulfur-containing compounds called glucosinolates into isothiocyanates and sulfur compounds. The latter have anticancer properties.
The sulfur compounds are essential because they get into the liver detoxification process which is a process at the level of the genes.
All of this information is based on clinical trials but the wonders that broccoli do are possible only if you consume it after a short steam cooking, for a few minutes, or if you eat it raw. Boiled broccoli does not maintain its properties.
The broccoli grown in the open air is available from July to October, so the optimal nutritional qualities come from plants harvested during this period.
Broccoli should be washed and cut into very small pieces. The light wood, that is the strain, can be steamed for 3-6 minutes. This makes it easy to consume and gives you a superior quality fiber, which is a mandatory help for the intestinal transit.
It would be ideal to cut the broccoli bunches into very small cubes and do not heat them up. Mix them with a mustard sauce or lemon sauce, then add the pieces from the steamed strain and the result will be a delicious broccoli salad. In this way, with a part of the plant steam-cooked and a raw part, you benefit from several types of fibers.
Fibers combine with the bile acids in the digestive tract and are easily eliminated. This process also regulates the bad cholesterol. At the same time, bile acids are not secreted in excess, which has proven implications in the development of the colon cancer.
The broccoli must be deposit in a refrigerator, placed in a paper bag in order to keep its properties for as long as possible.
Among the side effects that may arise from broccoli consumption, the most frequent are gut and bloating because this vegetable is rich in insoluble fiber, which can lead to indigestion, especially if you suffer from gastritis or irritable bowel syndrome.
In these cases, the consumption of broccoli should be limited.
Also, large quantities consumption of broccoli may increase the body’s iodine needs, which could lead to a deficiency.
Broccoli: Nutritional Facts
100 grams of broccoli contain the following nutritional values:
Energy – 24 Kcal
Water – 89%
Carbohydrates – 2 grams
Proteins – 3.4 grams
Fibers – 3 grams
Lipids – 0.3 grams
Also, broccoli contains calcium, iron, Vitamin A , Vitamin C, and Vitamin K.
Let’s remember that in order to keep all the broccoli’s properties intact and to benefit from all its beneficial substances, it is good to eat raw broccoli. However, in order to maintain the maximum nutritional value of this vegetable, it must be boiled for a maximum of 10 minutes or to be steam-cooked.
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