Broccoli: The Cancer-fighting Vegetable

If you're looking for a veggie to go toe-to-toe with cancer, broccoli is the number one contender

Enjoy broccoli raw, steamed or boiled

Broccoli is chock-full of antioxidants and sulforaphane, two big-time cancer fighters

While most fruits and vegetables contain cancer-fighting elements like phytosterols, vitamin C, beta-carotene, folic acid, selenium, chlorophyll and fibre, broccoli is the undisputed champion.

Broccoli not only contains antioxidants, it’s rich in sulforaphane, another compound known to defend against cancer. Studies have shown that diets that include a high intake of broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables may lower the risk of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, bladder cancer and prostate cancer, and decrease the incidence of lung cancer.

Fresh broccoli is available year round. Serve it steamed as a side dish, or add it to a stir-fry. Enjoy it raw with a yogurt-based dip or grate it to make broccoli coleslaw.

If you find broccoli on the bitter side, simply blanch it in boiling water for one to three minutes, and then run it under cold water to stop the cooking process.

If you have picky eaters in the family, try chopping broccoli into small bites and adding it to fresh salads, stews, meatloaf or even macaroni and cheese (cheese sauce provides a great disguise).

Originally published in Wellness Matters, Canada Wide Media’s quarterly newsletter on health and wellness.