The word “broccoli” means “branch” or “arm” for the cross-shaped stems, like mini trees bearing the blossoms. Broccoli was a popular food of the ancient Romans, and its use can be traced to 16th century France and England in the 1700s.
Eaten raw, broccoli has a number of nutritional elements. It’s important to note that broccoli is best when eaten raw, because cooking and processing destroys some of its antioxidants.
It has twice the vitamin C of an orange, almost as much calcium as whole milk (with a better rate of absorption), and contains anti-cancer and anti-viral properties with its selenium content.
Serving Size: One bunch (608 grams) of broccoli
Amt. per serving
Fat: 2.2 g
Sodium: 201 mg
Carbohydrates: 40 g
Dietary Fiber: 16 g
Sugar: 10 g
Protein: 17 g
Studies Done on Broccoli
Broccoli has been proven over and over to contain amazing compounds that heal the body and prevent cell damage.
Eating broccoli and broccoli sprouts may enhance your body’s ability to detoxify after exposure to food- and air-borne carcinogens and oxidants, thanks to the phytochemical sulforaphane, according to a recent study.
Broccoli is widely studied for its apparent ability to fight and even prevent many different cancers and other ills of the body. However, the bioavailability (ability to be absorbed into the system) of isothiocyanates (a phytochemical, or plant chemicals) from fresh broccoli is approximately three times greater than that of cooked broccoli.
Broccoli Healthy Recipe: Broccoli Sauce
This can be used as a sauce, dressing, or dip.
- 1 large bunch of fresh broccoli
- 2 to 4 cloves crushed garlic
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tsp. cumin
- 1 tsp. crushed coriander seeds
- 1/4 cup chopped onion
- A pinch of black pepper
- 3 tsp. lemon or lime juice
- 1 cup water
- Place half an inch or less of water into a large saucepan to a boil. Chop the broccoli into large chunks and place into the boiling water, stirring until each chunk is wet, until just tender and still vibrant green.
- Transfer broccoli to the bowl of a food processor and add remaining ingredients, processing until pureed.
- Return mixture into saucepan and warm over medium heat for about 3 minutes for a thick sauce that can be thinned with water if preferred. Adjust seasonings accordingly. Makes 6 servings.