Sure, your mom told you to, but is eating broccoli really that good for you?
There are few foods hated more by children than this poor, disrespected vegetable. But science has found broccoli has many incredible health benefits – including cancer prevention.
Eating broccoli provides your body with loads of nutrients to support optimal, body-wide health.
Nutritional Benefits of Broccoli
Although broccoli has many nutritional benefits it’s important to remember that cooking can destroy many of its antioxidants, so it’s always best to eat your broccoli raw.
It has more vitamin C than oranges, more easily absorbed calcium than whole milk, and contains selenium which has anti-cancer and anti-viral properties. Broccoli even contains essential iron.
But that isn’t all this tree-shaped veggie has to offer.
Could Prevent or Slow Arthritis
A substance (sulphoraphane) contained in broccoli may help slow or even prevent the most common type of arthritis.
Osteoarthritis is an age and overuse-related joint disease that happens when joint cartilage and bone begins to break down. It most commonly develops in heavily used body parts like the back, hips, feet, and knees. Symptoms are typically pain and stiffness.
Recent studies in mice find that sulforaphane actually slowed down the destruction of joint cartilage. They found that sulforaphane blocked enzymes that are responsible for joint destruction (1).
A 2017 study with human subjects found that taking broccoli extract resulted in significantly increased levels of sulphoraphane and other joint healthy compounds in the joint fluid of everyone participant tested (2).
Look Younger, Longer
Vitamin C is an antioxidant that, when eaten in its natural form instead of supplements, can help fight skin damage caused by exposure to sunlight and pollution, slow development of wrinkles, and improve skin appearance (3).
Just one cup of broccoli provides 81 milligrams of vitamin C. That’s more than the recommended daily allowance for this nutrient.
Since vitamin C plays a critical role in the formation of your skin’s main support system (collagen) broccoli can play a big role in keeping wrinkles and sagging away.
Healthy Bones with Vitamin K
According to the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University, 67 percent of US residents are consume less than the recommended daily allowance for vitamin K (4).
However, one cup of chopped broccoli has 92 micrograms of vitamin K; just less than 100 percent of the amount men need daily.
Vitamin K is an essential nutrient that helps the body use calcium for strong bones (5).
People with higher blood levels of vitamin K enjoy greater bone density, while those with less than optimum levels are more likely to have osteoporosis (6).
Prevent Cancer with Broccoli
Studies suggest that sulforaphane, the sulfur-based compound giving broccoli a slightly bitter taste, is also what gives it cancer prevention power (7).
Researchers found that sulforaphane inhibits an enzyme called histone deacetylase (HDAC), which is involved in cancer cells metabolism (8).
This ability to stop HDAC enzymes turns sulforaphane-containing food into a potentially powerful part of future cancer treatments. This compound is currently being studied for its cancer slowing properties. There have been promising results for skin, esophageal, pancreatic, and prostate cancer (9).
Sprouted Broccoli Seeds Provide Glucosinolates
The assumption is that it doesn’t matter nutritionally if a plant is sprouted or full-grown, but that isn’t true at all.
Broccoli sprouts don’t have the large amount of vitamins K and C found in mature broccoli, but make up for it with lots more of a substance the body uses to make healthy sulforaphane.
Broccoli sprouts have very high levels of glucoraphanin, a glucosinolate precursor to sulforaphane (10). Sprouts can contain between 10 to 100 times the amount of glucoraphanin than found in adult broccoli. (11)
Besides enhancing joint health, sulforaphane has also been found to activate enzymes needed to remove disease-causing agents from the body. This process is a built-in defense mechanism activated by relatively tiny quantities of isothiocyanates like sulforaphane that stimulate your body’s natural disease-fighting power. (12)
The Next Level Difference
We are proud to say that our Next Level Superfoods Multivitamin includes 400 mg of sprouted broccoli seed in our formulation.
While almost everyone can eat more broccoli for its amazing health benefits, most of us do not have easy access to broccoli seeds which provide some very unique and incredible health benefits not commonly found in other vegetables, even in regular broccoli.
It’s even more difficult to find SPROUTED broccoli seeds which ramps up the health benefits even further.
It’s attention to detail like this which truly sets our multivitamin apart and takes it to the “Next Level”.
- Davidson RK, Jupp O, de Ferrars R, et al. Sulforaphane represses matrix-degrading proteases and protects cartilage from destruction in vitro and in vivo. Arthritis Rheum. 2013;65(12):3130–3140. doi:10.1002/art.38133 – Link
- Davidson R, Gardner S, Jupp O, et al. Isothiocyanates are detected in human synovial fluid following broccoli consumption and can affect the tissues of the knee joint. Sci Rep. 2017;7(1):3398. Published 2017 Jun 13. doi:10.1038/s41598-017-03629-5 – Link
- Pullar JM, Carr AC, Vissers MCM. The Roles of Vitamin C in Skin Health. Nutrients. 2017;9(8):866. Published 2017 Aug 12. doi:10.3390/nu9080866 – Link
- Oregon State University. Micronutrient Inadequacies in the US Population: an Overview – Link
- Price CT, Langford JR, Liporace FA. Essential Nutrients for Bone Health and a Review of their Availability in the Average North American Diet. The Open Orthopaedics Journal. 2012;6:143-149. doi:10.2174/1874325001206010143 – Link
- Fusaro M, Mereu MC, Aghi A, Iervasi G, Gallieni M. Vitamin K and bone. Clin Cases Miner Bone Metab. 2017;14(2):200–206. doi:10.11138/ccmbm/2017.14.1.200 – Link
- Tortorella SM, Royce SG, Licciardi PV, Karagiannis TC. Dietary Sulforaphane in Cancer Chemoprevention: The Role of Epigenetic Regulation and HDAC Inhibition. Antioxid Redox Signal. 2015;22(16):1382–1424. doi:10.1089/ars.2014.6097 – Link
- Ho E, Clarke JD, Dashwood RH. Dietary sulforaphane, a histone deacetylase inhibitor for cancer prevention. J Nutr. 2009;139(12):2393–2396. doi:10.3945/jn.109.113332 – Link
- Veeranki OL, Bhattacharya A, Marshall JR, Zhang Y. Organ-specific exposure and response to sulforaphane, a key chemopreventive ingredient in broccoli: implications for cancer prevention. Br J Nutr. 2012;109(1):25–32. doi:10.1017/S0007114512000657 – Link
- Fahey JW, Holtzclaw WD, Wehage SL, Wade KL, Stephenson KK, Talalay P. Sulforaphane Bioavailability from Glucoraphanin-Rich Broccoli: Control by Active Endogenous Myrosinase. PLoS One. 2015;10(11):e0140963. Published 2015 Nov 2. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0140963 – Link
- Fahey JW, Zhang Y, Talalay P. Broccoli sprouts: an exceptionally rich source of inducers of enzymes that protect against chemical carcinogens. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1997;94(19):10367–10372. – Link
12) Angelino D, Dosz EB, Sun J, et al. Myrosinase-dependent and -independent formation and control of isothiocyanate products of glucosinolate hydrolysis. Front Plant Sci. 2015;6:831. Published 2015 Oct 6. doi:10.3389/fpls.2015.00831 – Link