Yes, Broccoli is Paleo!
What’s with Broccoli??
As with any other vegetables, broccoli is a good source of fiber that aids in digestion. Broccoli is extremely high in vitamins C, K and fair amount of minerals like manganese, magnesium, iron and phosphorus. It has phytonutrients which are known to lower the risks of diabetes, heart diseases and certain cancers according to studies are good for the immune system. Antioxidants are present in broccoli too. These can help fight and neutralize free radicals causing cell damages in the body.
Broccoli is low in sodium and calories. Being a member of the cabbage family, broccoli contains sulfur, a vital nutrient that lowers inflammation. It has anti-cancer properties too. Broccoli is best when steamed and stir-fried.
Health Benefits of Broccoli
- Protection from Cancer. Brocolli is a cruciferous vegetable. All vegetables in this group can protect a person from having stomach, intestinal cancers, colorectal, lung, prostate and breast cancers.
- Cholesterol Reduction. The soluble fiber contents of broccoli bind with cholesterol making it easier to be secreted from the body.
- As mentioned above, broccoli contains phytonutrients such as glucoraphanin, gluconasturtiin and glucobrassicin that helps in the body’s detoxification, eliminating contaminants.
- Anti-inflammation. Broccoli is rich in kaempferol and isothiocyanates which are phytonutrients that have the ability to lessen allergic reactions and regulate inflammation
- Aids Digestion. Since broccoli is high in fiber, it prevents constipation. It helps in keeping regular bowel movement and maintains healthy bacteria levels in the intestines. Broccoli aids in digestion, keeping the stomach lining healthy
- Good for the Heart. The anti-inflammatory properties of phytonutrient sulforaphane in broccoli may be able to prevent or reverse the damages in the blood vessel linings caused by inflammation due to chronic sugar problems. B-complex vitamins found in broccoli can regulate or reduce excessive homocysteine, an amino acid that builds up after eating red meats causing increased risk of coronary artery disease.
- Good for the Eyes. Broccoli contains lutein and zeaxanthin, antioxidants that promotes eye health. These chemicals may help in protecting the eyes from macular degeneration, an incurable condition that blurs central vision and cataracts, the clouding of the eye lens.
- Good for the Bones. Brocolli is high in vitamin K and potassium which are essential in keeping the bones healthy, preventing osteoporosis.
Goitrogens and Thyroid Problems
Broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables contain goitrogens, a substance that suppresses the function of the thyroid glands by interfering with iodine absorption. Goitrogens may contribute to the development of goiter, the swelling of the thyroid glands, for individuals who are at risk.
Regular consumption of raw broccoli may result to decrease uptake of iodine from the foods that we eat containing it. For people who do not suffer from any thyroid problems, eating broccoli would not be a problem because the goitrogenic compounds of broccoli can be outweighed by the nutritional and health benefits of it.
The way the broccoli is prepared can affect the amounts of nutrition that you can get from it.
Cooking can eliminate the goitrogenic compounds found in broccoli. Studies found that broccoli loses the goitrogenic contents together with the most of its cancer-fighting nutrients by boiling. When the water after boiling has been discarded, 90% of the goitrogens and other nutrients go away with it.
The best method to use in cooking broccoli is by steaming. Lightly steaming broccoli rendered sulforaphane three times more bioavailable than after heavily cooking it. Most nutrients are preserved and made available when broccoli is steamed and goitrogen compounds are lessen by 33%..
Click here to see what other vegetables are Paleo.
What Experts Say About Broccoli.. Is It Paleo?
“One study found that lightly steaming broccoli rendered the sulforaphane three times more bioavailable than after heavily cooking it. I like to steam my broccoli until it’s bright green and tender enough to pierce the stalk with a fork with an emphatic push”. – Mark Sisson
All you ever wanted to know about Brocolli and Paleo
Paleo Grubs. Foods You Can Eat on the Paleo Diet
The Paleo Diet. What to Eat on the Paleo Diet
Paleo OMG. Broccoli
Chris Kresser. RHR: Do Raw Vegetables Hurt Your Thyroid Health?
Is Broccoli Paleo.
Mark’s Daily Apple. Why You Should Eat Sulfur-Rich Vegetables
Importance of Dietary Phytonutrients. Molly Kretsch, Ph.D
Live Science. Broccoli: Health Benefits, Risks & Nutrition Facts
Care2. 9 Health Benefits of Broccoli
The World’s Healthiest Foods. What’s New and Beneficial About Broccoli
MNT. What are the health benefits of broccoli?
Natural News. Sulfur in broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables may hold the key to healing genetic diseases
SF Gate. Healthy Eating. Why Is Broccoli Bad For Thyroid?
NCBI. Effect of meal composition and cooking duration on the fate of sulforaphane following consumption of broccoli by healthy human subjects.
Did we miss anything?
Comment below and let us know what you think. Do you agree with our conclusion?
photo credit: Broccoli