Broccoli is one of those foods that we know we should be eating more of, but simply don’t. That seems to be the case for a lot of leafy green vegetables, as they can bring a lot of great health benefits, but don’t have the appealing look or sweet taste. Of course, there are those out there that like the taste of vegetables such as broccoli, though they might not know exactly what that is doing for their body. Spoiler alert, they are doing a lot of good.
It goes without saying that broccoli is a superfood thanks to its wide array of benefits, high nutritional count and low calorie count. So how exactly is broccoli going to be supporting your overall health? Let’s breakdown the contents of each serving of broccoli, and tell you what those benefits are. The information might make you suck it up and start eating more broccoli on a weekly basis.
One cup of any food is going to be a significant amount, and chopping up one cup of broccoli is really all you need. You’ll find just 30 calories in that serving, with a high vitamin and mineral count. Each cup will get you 135 percent of your daily recommended value of vitamin C, and 116 percent of your recommended vitamin K intake. Broccoli is also a significant source of vitamin A, folate, riboflavin, vitamin E, vitamin B6 and niacin. All of that will still getting you nine percent of your recommended fiber intake.
There isn’t one mineral that stands out and gives you 100 percent of your recommended value, but there are a lot of important minerals that your body needs. Broccoli contains a significant amount of manganese, and also adds in plenty of potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, calcium and iron. These are all essential building blocks, and the main reason why your parents tried to get you to eat more broccoli.
Perhaps the biggest benefit that you can get from eating broccoli comes from the immune system boost it provides. With the massive amount of vitamin C, you will naturally see your immune system strengthening. That allows you to prevent many different diseases, and even make recovery time faster for ones that you do still get.
While most people think of the common cold when it comes to their immune system, there is a lot of other infections that you can fight off because of broccoli. Broccoli has detoxification properties, which keeps other infections out. This means you are less likely to have rashes and other skin conditions, while the anti-inflammation values of broccoli can even keep away gout and relieve pain. If you have ever had a gummy multivitamin that sort of tastes like broccoli, you now know why.
Heart disease is all too common in people around the world, and many of the problems stem from inflammation. As we just mentioned, broccoli has a lot of anti-inflammatory properties, cutting down on your chances of heart disease. Beyond that, broccoli can help lower your blood pressure thanks to the minerals that allow your insulin levels to become more stable.
Even those that have been diagnosed with heart disease will see benefits from eating more broccoli as there are certain diseases that can be reversed by increasing sulforaphane levels. The fiber content in broccoli will also help your cholesterol levels by lowering the LDL (bad) cholesterol and increasing the HDL (good) cholesterol levels.
We are told from a young age that our bones need calcium to stay strong. For the most part, you are told to drink more milk to accomplish this feat. However, you can get the calcium you need from eating more broccoli. Broccoli contains a solid amount of calcium, as well as other minerals like magnesium that will strengthen your bones. This can help you prevent bone decay and the problems of osteoporosis.
If you are already experiencing osteoporosis or arthritis, broccoli will help you alleviate some of the pain. The minerals and anti-inflammatory properties help fight to make the pain lessen, as well as strengthen the bones to reduce further issues. So for the kids that are lactose intolerant and can’t drink milk, broccoli is a fine substitute.
Some people are just very desperate to lose weight, and couldn’t care less about the other benefits. If that’s the case, then you are in luck with broccoli as you’ll get all of the benefits whether you were looking for them or not. As stated, broccoli is very low in the calorie count, and you can eat a lot of it with your meals (or even on its own).
Not only is the low calorie count going to benefit your weight loss plan, but there is a lot of fiber that will help you feel more full. In case you were wondering, that fiber content also helps boost your digestive system and helps get rid of constipation and indigestion. When your digestive system is working at its best, your metabolism is seeing a boost, as well.
All of the vitamins and antioxidants that you find in broccoli is going to make your skin look a lot better. Sun damaged skin can see a quicker recovery for those that are eating more omega-3 fatty acids that you can find in broccoli, and you will look more refreshed and hydrated. This allows for smoother skin and slowed signs of aging such as wrinkles and sun spots.
You already wear sunglasses to help prevent damage to your eyes, and you can eat more broccoli on top of that. Broccoli’s nutrients help eye health and repair damage, keeping your vision for much longer. It has been shown that the contents of broccoli will lower your chance of preventing eye diseases such as cataracts that are more common in older people.
Summing it Up
Now you can see why your parents wanted you to eat a lot more broccoli when you were a child. Had they laid it out for you in detail like this, chances are you would have been eating more the older you got. Sure, broccoli doesn’t have a lot of flavor and people make it unhealthy by adding butter or mixing it with unhealthy foods, but broccoli on its own is a fantastic addition to any diet.
With all of that said, are there any negatives to eating broccoli? The only negative is that there is a very, very small amount of people that are actually allergic to plants such as broccoli. If you are not one of these people, then there really is no excuse to not be eating more broccoli. So listen to what mom said, and add broccoli (without the butter) to your next meal and start feeling better today.