Improve Your Health With Cauliflower

Known as broccoli’s pale cousin, cauliflower offers just as many fantastic health benefits as other members of the cruciferous vegetable family. Cauliflower is a great source of glucosinolates, sulfur-containing compounds that support optimal functioning of our cardiovascular, digestive, immune and detoxification systems. Sulfur, the third most abundant mineral in the body, is highly concentrated in the muscles, skin and bones. It’s essential to processes that create protein for cells, tissues, hormones, enzymes, and antibodies.

Research also shows a strong relationship between glucosinolates and the antioxidant properties of cauliflower. Some of the more colorful versions of cauliflower such as Grafiti (purple) cauliflower, have a strong profile of these two powerful plant nutrients. But don’t feel you have to go on a hunt for colored cauliflower; white, the most commonly consumed variety of cauliflower, is rich in nutrients and plays an important role in a whole foods diet.

Cauliflower can be prepared in many ways. It can be roasted, sautéed, steamed, or boiled. Studies have shown equivalent benefits from raw and cooked cauliflower, as long as it’s not overcooked. Sautéed cauliflower is a better option than boiling, steaming or microwaving, which changes its consistency depleting flavor and nutrition. To spice up sautéed cauliflower, add herbs such as turmeric, garlic, or shallot.

References

  • World’s Healthiest Foods. Cauliflower. Accessed 28 Sep 2017: http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=13
  • Lim, T.K., Edible Medicinal And Non-Medicinal Plants: Volume 7, Flowers. (2014) Springer Science & Business Media, Dordrecht. p. 571+ Accessed 30 Sep 2017: Google Books Link
  • Cabello-Hurtado F, Gicquel M, and Esnault MA. “Evaluation of the antioxidant potential of cauliflower (Brassica oleracea) from a glucosinolate content perspective.” Food Chemistry, (May 2012) 132:2,15; 1003-1009. Accessed 29 Sept 2017: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0308814611016682
  • dos Reis, LCR, de Oliveira VR, Hagen MEK, et al. “Effect of cooking on the concentration of bioactive compounds in broccoli (Brassica oleracea var. Avenger) and cauliflower (Brassica oleracea var. Alphina F1) grown in an organic system.” Food Chem (April 2015) 172:1, 770-777. Accessed 29 Sept 2017: http://www.academia.edu/10958974/Effect_of_cooking_on_the_concentration_of_bioactive_compounds_in_broccoli_Brassica_oleracea_var._Avenger_and_cauliflower_Brassica_oleracea_var._Alphina_F1_grown_in_an_organic_system
  • Kapusta-Duch J, Kusznierewicz B, Leszczyn’ska T, et al. “Effect of cooking on the contents of glucosinolates and their degradation products in selected Brassica vegetables.” Jl Functional Foods (2016) 23; 412-422. Accessed 30 Sep 2017: https://pubag.nal.usda.gov/catalog/5273051