Broccoli and a Healthy Cancer Prevention Diet
by Mark Ransome
nature to protect plants against damage caused by insects, disease and
environmental stress. These phytochemical molecules are the ones that give fruits
and vegetables their brilliant colors, provide the smell to garlic and the bitter taste to
tea and dark chocolate. It is very likely that these phytochemicals, not the vitamins
and minerals, are the source of the cancer prevention capabilities of these healthy
The cabbage family contains some sulfur-based phytochemicals that seem to be
effective in protecting against tumor development. While all members have
phytochemical based cancer fighting capabilities, cabbage, broccoli and brussel
sprouts seem to be most effective. Cruciferous vegetables contain the greatest
variety of phytochemicals of all fruits and vegetables. A diet rich in these vegetables
offers protection against many types of cancers. Cabbage, broccoli and brussel
sprouts either contain or create many phytochemicals such as polyphenols,
glucosinolates and isothiocynates such as sulforaphane. Isothiocynates contain a
sulfur atom which is responsible for the smell when members of the cabbage family
are cooked too long. The isothiocynates sulforaphane in broccoli seems to enable
our bodies to get rid of carcinogenic toxic compounds. These molecules also seem to
act at the cellular level and reduce the frequency and size of tumors. Sulforaphane is
also a compound with antibiotic properties that will act against the bacteria
responsible for stomach ulcers and should therefore provide protection against
stomach cancer. Information that is becoming available on broccoli is showing us
how important that this vegetable becomes a major component of our diet.
Unfortunately not all broccolis are created equal and many will contain much less of
the phytochemical sulforaphane. Apparently the more bitter the broccoli tastes, the
more sulforaphane. New products such as broccoli sprouts seem to contain more
phytochemicals than mature heads of broccoli.
It should be note that cooking cruciferous vegetables in water will reduce the quantity
of phytochemicals that will be released when they are digested. Steaming or quickly
stir frying would be a better approach to maximizing the available phytochemicals.
Eating a healthy balanced diet can provide our bodies with tens of thousands of
different phytochemicals. However not all fruits, vegetables and other plant products
provide the best anti-cancer phytochemicals. The ten best groups of anti-cancer
foods are discussed in our website They include:
berries and citrus fruits, cruciferous vegetables, garlic and onions, green tea, omega-
3 essential fatty acids, olive oil, tomatoes, soy products, red wine and dark chocolate.
About The Author
Mark Ransome is a contributing editor and writer for the popular new website
. Visitors will have access to a new free diet and weight loss
Current research has shown that a
number of readily available foods
such as cruciferous vegetables that
make up a healthy diet, actually have
a major impact on cancer prevention.
The cabbage family of vegetables is
known as crucifers and includes
cabbage, broccoli, kale, brussel
sprouts, turnips, cauliflower, radishes,
bok choy and watercress. These
cancer fighting foods seem to have
the ability to interfere with the
development of cancerous tumors.
Cancer fighting foods all contain large
amounts of certain phytochemicals.
Phytochemicals were developed by
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