Everyone when we were little probably fought a battle with our mothers when preparing broccoli. While it has a strong flavour and aroma and is not the first thing you think of when looking for something tasty, broccoli is a versatile food with a lot of nutrients, so finding a way to consume it that is palatable is not just a matter of taste, it is a matter of health.
Broccoli is very healthy - eating it is extremely beneficial for your health. It has anti-cancer properties, improves eyesight, favourably affects the condition of the digestive tract, has anti-inflammatory effects. The properties of broccoli help in the treatment of anaemia, provide vitamins and are simply tasty.
Origin of broccoli
The Brassica oleracea italic (its scientific name) is native to the Mediterranean, and the Romans were extensively engaged in cultivation and improvement. In fact, it was so popular as it was beneficial that they decided to give it the nickname "the five green fingers of Jupiter."
Broccoli is a plant and what is usually consumed are its flower heads, but both the small and the large stems are edible. Like other foods, the way it is prepared makes a difference: to keep its properties intact it is necessary to eat it raw, well washed, boiled for less than a minute or sautéed with spices for a short time. In creams, soups or broths, although it has a pleasant flavour, it does not maintain its nutrients.
What properties does broccoli have?
· Broccoli contains many substances that are beneficial to health.
· kaempferol - the flavonoid, which has an anti-inflammatory effect, also helps prevent allergies;
· fibre - in the amount of 2.6 g per serving, thanks to which 100 g of broccoli contains only 34 calories;
· vitamins A and K, which help the body absorb vitamin D. Vitamin A is also called the youth vitamin: it slows down the aging process, has a beneficial effect on the skin and bones, prevents twilight blindness;
· carotenoids such as lutein and zeaxanthin, which improve eyesight;
· glucoraphanin, which is transformed during digestion into another chemical that promotes the regeneration of skin cells;
· Sulforaphane - Helps unblock arteries and restores the self-healing ability of blood vessels, reducing the risk of heart disease, also protects against prostate, breast, lung and colorectal cancer (but only when broccoli is boiled in water that does not exceed 76ºC)
· antioxidants: effectively fights free radicals;
· potassium - helps reduce high blood pressure, promotes the cleaning of blood vessels, prevents cramps;
· calcium: 100 g of broccoli provides 4% of the daily requirement of calcium;
· vitamin C: up to 64.9 mg in 100 g of cooked vegetables.
Broccoli has valuable health properties: it protects against many diseases and ailments. We owe it to its high content of vitamins, minerals and the so-called sulforaphane, which is a powerful antioxidant. Here is a summary of the nutritional properties of cooked broccoli, in 100 grams:
· Energy value - 35 kcal
· Total protein - 2.38 g
· Fat - 0.41 g
· Carbohydrates - 7.18 g
· Fibre - 3.3 g
· Vitamin C - 64.9 mg
· Thiamine - 0.063 mg
· Riboflavin - 0.123 mg
· Niacin - 0.553 mg
· Vitamin B6 - 0.200 mg
· Folic acid - 108 μg
· Vitamin A - 1548 IU
· Vitamin K - 141.1 μg
· Calcium - 40 mg
· Iron - 0.67 mg
· Magnesium - 21 mg
· Phosphorus - 67 mg
· Potassium - 293 mg
· Sodium - 41 mg
· Zinc - 0.45 mg
Potassium and more
Broccoli stands out for its concentration of potassium, a chemical compound necessary for the proper functioning of the brain. For vegetarians, it is a moderate source of protein and fibre, as well as other micronutrients such as calcium, vitamin C and magnesium. For all this, it is imperative to consume it and instil it in children to eliminate the displeasure it generates.
Benefits of consuming broccoli
As pleasant and nutritious presentations it is to make it gratin, with Parmesan cheese in a gratin oven; or sauté it with sauce, sesame oil and fine onion to make it oriental style. For children it is ideal undercooked, cut into sticks and soaked in a dressing such as mayonnaise or other sauces. Neither its taste nor its nutritional contribution will again be the subject of contempt.
For strong and flexible joints
The broccoli contains a large amount of vitamin C, which is necessary in the production of collagen, which builds cartilage. Collagen is also necessary for the proper functioning of the joints and tendons, improves the condition of connective tissue.
This vegetable is recommended for those who struggle with problems related to joint degeneration.
To lower the pressure
Broccoli is recommended for people suffering from hypertension. They contain a lot of potassium, which cleans the blood vessels, thanks to which the blood can flow more freely.
Such a condition, when the blood has the ability to flow freely, there is no narrowing in the veins - it promotes a decrease in blood pressure. Additionally, potassium accelerates the excretion of too much sodium and also regulates high pressure.
The content of substances such as lutein, zeaxanthin and vitamins of group B and C significantly affect the maintenance of good vision, especially in the case of people whose vision deteriorates over the years. Also, thanks to regular consumption of broccoli, there is less risk of macular degeneration.
The good habit of eating broccoli
Eating broccoli may not be the most common thing for some people because as children they will most likely not get used to it and as adults there has been a kind of fear or resistance to trying such a nutritious food as this can be.
For that reason, it is important that a habit of feeding children with fruits and vegetables is always instilled so that in their development process they take a liking to this type of food as they are essential and mandatory for their health and for any individual. Eating broccoli from babies will allow that when they are older the consumption of this "little tree" is not strange.
Broccoli as we have seen has a large number of beneficial health properties, it is for this reason that its inclusion in the diet is almost mandatory. There are many ways to prepare it and some are so delicious that you will not believe it, just a little willpower, imagination and culinary creativity are enough to turn broccoli into a real delicacy that can be enjoyed even by those who were resistant at the time.
Broccoli preparation methods
Broccoli should not be eaten raw. It can be prepared in various ways, depending on the planned dish and the taste of the person. First, you can cook it, for this add the broccoli washed in boiling water, this will keep most of its juices, you should cook it for 5-7 minutes.
Second, broccoli can be fried, although it is a fairly popular method. The vegetables are fried at a relatively low temperature for about 3 minutes. However, its disadvantage is that it loses nutritional value during cooking.
Broccoli can also be blanched: we pour water with a maximum temperature of 76 degrees for a few minutes, and then quickly put them in cold water. In this way the stems will not be fit to eat.
The last way is to put the broccoli to soak: recommended for people who like to eat raw broccoli. Soaking is done in salty water, preferably for about 15 minutes.
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