Healthy benefits of eating broccoli

Thursday, December 12, 2013 by: Sandeep Godiyal
Tags: broccoli, health benefits, inflammation

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(NaturalNews) In order to prevent arteries from clogging, researchers from Imperial College London suggest consuming at least one cup of broccoli daily. Their research findings concludes that there is a chemical in leafy green vegetables, as well as broccoli, that offers protective measures for the heart, including preventing artery blockages.

Broccoli keeps the heart healthy:

Broccoli contains a compound called sulforaphane, which is necessary to activate a protein that stops plague formation in the arteries. Glucosinolates, which produce anti-inflammatory isothiocyanates (ITCs), are also found in broccoli.

ITCs are important, because they stop chronic inflammation within blood vessels and cells. ITCs are also responsible for the reduction of heart disease and stroke.

It has been proven that inflammation inside arteries is fatal.

A wide range of antioxidants are found in broccoli, including vitamins E and C; manganese and zinc; lutein, carotenoids, beta carotene and zeaxanthin; and quercetin and kaempferol.

These antioxidants work together as a group to reduce oxidative stress and inflammation associated with many digestive conditions. Those with high stress levels in their life need more antioxidants to protect their overall health.

Plaque buildup and cholesterol is lowered thanks to broccoli's I-3C:

Broccoli helps lower cholesterol thanks to the fact that is rich in the phytonutrient indole-3-carbinol (I-3C) as well as fiber. The bile acids and fiber bind together within the digestive system, allowing for excretion to occur, which results in the lowering of cholesterol. The rate at which the bad cholesterol (LDL) travels is lowered because of the I-3C, plus it goes to different areas of the body in order to prevent plaque buildup from occurring.

Sulforaphane also prevents platelets from clinging to blood vessel walls. Sulforaphane was discovered to also cease the creation of a new layer thickening within the walls of blood vessels flowing to the heart.

Sulforaphane's ability to prevent blocks in blood vessels and inflammation of existing plaque was also found in another study highlighting these facts. A study using rat models with inflammatory bowel disorder that was performed in 2013 to find out the effects of plant compounds, including broccoli extract, showed that broccoli was a powerful remedy. When combined with other anti-inflammatory agents, such as rosemary, turmeric and thyme, broccoli showed strong promise for steadily decreasing inflammation.

Optimal ways to cook broccoli:

Broccoli can be served in either raw or cooked form and still be a good source of antioxidants. However, when served raw or steamed lightly, it retains most of its nutritional value. When steamed, it should be for three minutes or less. Cooking methods such as pressure-cooking, boiling, baking, or frying lowers the broccoli's nutritional value. Keep in mind, if you save the water that the broccoli is cooked in and reuse it for another dish, you are able to hold on to all the nutrients.

In order to keep a healthy heart, everyone should consume a regular diet rich with anti-inflammatory compounds, antioxidants, fiber-rich foods and a steady supply of vitamins and minerals. When consumed regularly, broccoli provides all of these and more for heart protection.

There are more than 100 research papers emphasizing the numerous benefits of consuming broccoli, from strong heart-healthy results to cancer-preventative measures, and this is no coincidence. When speaking to nutritional experts, they will agree that the regular consumption of broccoli will prevent or reduce oxidative stress, chronic inflammation and excessive levels of cholesterol.


About the author:
Sandeep is an mountain climber, runner, and fitness coach. He shares his tips for staying in shape and eating healthy on quickeasyfit.

More articles from Sandeep:
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