Broccoli has always been regarded as one of the most essential vegetables for health and nutrition not only because it is nutrient-packed, but because several studies have already demonstrated its ability to fight off cancer. But according to more recent studies, the cancer preventing properties of broccoli can become a double threat against cancer when combined with broccoli sprouts.
Johns Hopkins introduces the anti-cancer benefits of sprouts
It was the Johns Hopkins research team who first explored this vegetable’s fighting compounds. And the team was able to zero in on the phytochemical sulforaphane content of broccoli that makes it effective against cancer. With continuous study, the team also found out that the sprouts possess more amounts of antioxidants and provide greater protection against cancer. This has encouraged sprout growers everywhere.
University of Illinois study says broccoli combo is a double threat against cancer
A recent study from the University of Illinois proves; however, that eating broccoli or the sprouts alone may give much nutrition. But in an effort to boost the anti-cancer effects of the vegetable, both the mature broccoli and the spouts have to be consumed. One of the researchers and professor of nutrition at University of Illinois, Elizabeth Jeffrey explains, to be able to maximize the benefits of broccoli’s anti-cancer component, sulforaphane, the enzyme myrosinase is required. This is because the enzyme obtained from the sprouts increase the absorption of sulforaphane in the body. Hence, as the study concludes, eating broccoli in both forms can double the cancer preventive effects of this green.
The University of Illinois team studied the blood levels of the male participants in the study. The participants were divided into three groups. The first group were fed with meals containing broccoli alone. The second group consumed broccoli sprouts only. And the third group was served both. Out of the three groups, it was the third group of male participants who proved to have nearly 50 percent more sulforaphane in their system based on their blood tests.
This is certainly good news. It serves as another reminder to pay attention to eating your share of greens.
More cancer prevention recommendations
Aside from eating broccoli powder with sprouts, there are other food items that can possibly boost the cancer fighting properties of the vegetable. For example, wasabi, radish, mustard and arugula. The University of Illinois research team also suggests steaming instead of microwaving broccoli for around two to four minutes to get the most of the enzyme and maximize the cancer preventive properties of the green vegetable.
Sources for this article include
- Cooking Broccoli Destroys 90+ Percent of Anti-Cancer Compound Sulforaphane
- Broccoli sprouts – Up to fifty times more cancer fighting benefits than broccoli alone
- Selenium in broccoli and garlic boosts immune system, could help fight cancer
- Eating more flavonoid-rich foods can stave off disease and lower cancer risk, advise researchers