Broccoli, a member of the mustard family, was accepted early on in the United States as a vegetable with cancer-preventing benefits. More recently, broccoli sprouts, with even greater cancer-preventing benefits than mature broccoli, have been receiving a lot of attention. In this article, we will examine broccoli and its relative, the cauliflower, to find out more about these vegetables and the beneficial substances they contain.

Pungency Inhibits/Prevents Cancer

(continued from last month)

Since 1990, broccoli has been on the list of cancer-preventing plant foods advocated by the National Cancer Institute in the United States and other organizations. The cancer-preventing substance that has been the subject of all the attention is sulforaphane, a sulfur compound that gives the taste of broccoli its pungency. All vegetables of the mustard family contain this pungent substance, which serves not only as natural defense against attack by microorganisms, bacteria and viruses,, but as a lesson to birds and animals never to eat broccoli again. It is this pungency of broccoli that actively helps prevent cancer.

According to Prof. Takano of Tokyo University of Agriculture, “Sulforaphane helps prevent cancer by inducing the secretion of detoxifying enzymes by the liver that neutralize carcinogens and promote their elimination from the body.”

Research conducted in the United States on people who made an effort to eat broccoli on a daily basis reported that broccoli’s ability to inhibit colon cancer was greater than that of cabbage, another vegetable of the mustard family.

Furthermore, research from Japan clearly showed that broccoli is effective in inhibiting cancer attributable to consumption of the charred portions of cooked foods. Among all vegetables, broccoli proved the most effective cancer inhibitor at 79.5 percent, followed by komatsuna (Japanese mustard spinach) at 77.6 percent and green peppers at 73 percent.

To be continued . . .

(The information provided should not be construed as medical advice or instruction. Consult your physician before attempting any new program. Readers who fail to consult appropriate health authorities assume the risk of developing serious medical conditions.)


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