Broccoli Sprouts: The Most Powerful Cancer-Fighting Food
It is a known fact that sprouts of cruciferous legumes and vegetables are powerhouses of valuable nutrients. With its growing body of evidence showing various health benefits,
broccoli sprout has come to the forefront.
What are Broccoli Sprouts?
Broccoli sprouts are 3-4 day old broccoli plants that are similar to alfalfa sprouts. It may be eaten steam or raw, like other green vegetables.
They are rich in protein, low in calories and full of powerful phytochemicals, which are compounds in plant foods that offer many health benefits, as per the American Cancer Society. These compounds help protects the broccoli sprout, as well as acting as an antioxidant that helps in stimulating the ability of human cells to fight diseases, such as cancer, according to the National Cancer Institute.
What Makes Broccoli Sprout The Most Powerful Cancer-Fighting Food?
The secret to the health benefits of broccoli sprout lies in the bioactive compound sulforaphane, which is present in high concentrations when broccoli sprouts are consumed.
Published studies have stated that sulforaphane, is one of the most potent food-derived molecules of our current era, and that some remarkable health benefits can be accessed through its main source, which is broccoli sprout.
Broccoli sprouts contain a substance called sulforaphane, which is known to be one of the most powerful antioxidants and detoxification elements. Paul Talalay, M.D., from Johns Hopkins University, isolated the cancer-fighting phytochemical sulforaphane.
He discovered that sprouting delivers more sulforaphane, as compared to broccoli alone with 20-50 times the anti-cancer potential, using the right strain of broccoli sprouting seeds. Just 5 grams of broccoli sprouts have concentrations of the compound glucoraphanin, which is equivalent to that found in a 150 grams mature Broccoli.
Broccoli sprouts are the most hopeful in preventing and killing cancer. The most important thing about sulforaphane, is that it kills cancer cells, but seems to have minimal impact on healthy cells. Also, it intensifies the efficiency of anti-cancer drugs.
Health Benefits of Broccoli Sprouts:
1. Cancer Prevention
Consuming broccoli sprouts has been shown to decrease the risk of developing breast, stomach, colon, prostate, lung, skin and bladder cancers in research studies.
Much of its benefit is due to the fact that sulforaphane inhibits disease progression by initiating the death of damaged cells. As per a study which was published in “Cancer Epidemiology,” the phytochemicals present in broccoli sprouts help in detoxifying or neutralizing carcinogenic substances from the body, thus reducing cancer risk.
2. Reduces Health Damage from Pollutants
Researchers from Johns Hopkins have come up with another reason to eat broccoli sprouts. A clinical trial which are made up of almost 300 women and men living in China’s most polluted regions, found that daily consumption of just half-cup of broccoli sprouts helped rid of their bodies of cancer-causing contaminants.
Broccoli sprouts are a good source of glucoraphanin, which produces sulforaphane when swallowed or chewed. This compound stimulates the body’s ability to detoxify from various pollutants.
3. Heart Health
A research study whichwas conducted at The Japan Institute for the Control of Aging, discovered that those who consumed at least 3½ ounces of broccoli sprouts daily for one week, had lower blood cholesterol levels and an increase in HDL or good cholesterol levels.
4. Improves Diabetes
Broccoli sprouts help in the improvement of various parameters in diabetes. In fact, sulforaphane may prevent diabetes-induced fibrosis, nephropathy and vascular complications.
Broccoli sprouts also increased HDL cholesterol, blood antioxidant capacity
and reduced triglycerides, oxidative stress, insulin resistance, insulin and CRP.
5. Skin Protection
Sulforaphane provides protection against UVB and UVA inflammation, skin damage and sunburn.
Basic Nutrition Information of Broccoli Sprouts:
Broccoli sprouts, like other cruciferous vegetables and sprouts, such as broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower, are very low in calories. According to the USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, just half-cup serving of broccoli sprouts provides the following:
- 16 calories
- 1.4 grams (g) of protein (35 percent of calories from protein)
- 1.9 g carbohydrates
- less than one g fat
- zero g sugar
- zero milligrams (mg) cholesterol
- 2.88 mg sodium
- 1.1 g dietary fiber
Broccoli sprouts are a nutrient-dense food, which means that they are an excellent low-calorie source of many nutrients vital for human health. Also, broccoli sprouts contain Vitamins A, C and E and calcium.