Broccoli is one of those staple superfoods that the longest-lived races all over the world eat regularly. Broccoli contains isothiocyanates, sulphoraphane, glucosinolates, indoles, thioredoxin, iron, fibre, calcium, vitamins A, C, E & K, beta-carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin, potassium, lignans, chromium, phosphorus, magnesium, selenium and pantothenic acid. One cup of raw chopped broccoli gives you around 90mcg of folate, and broccoli retains more vitamin C than any other vegetable after cooking.
Broccoli lowers your risk of almost every kind of cancer
Men eating just three or more servings of cruciferous vegetables each week have a 44% lower prostate cancer risk and a 50% lower risk of developing advanced-stage prostate cancer. People eating the most overall cruciferous vegetables have a 49% drop in their colorectal cancer risk. Broccoli, rich in lignans, can dramatically reduce breast cancer tumour size and breast cancer cell growth. The broccoli flavonoid kaempferol has shown a 38% reduction in the risk of ovarian cancer. Broccoli protects you against stress-induced cancers. Isothiocyanates are a group of phytochemicals that have bladder cancer-fighting properties and can make changes on a genetic level, activating genes that fight cancer.
Broccoli is an anti-cancer sulphoraphane army
No drug eliminates the second wave of cancer (cancer stem cells) but broccoli can. The main isothiocyanate that broccoli contains is sulforaphane, which increases the body’s own enzymes, helping to detoxify clear carcinogenic substances more quickly, and helping to stop the formation of tumours. Sulforaphane not only targets and kills cancer stem cells, but it also helps prevent new malignancies from growing. Sulforaphane slows the ‘promotion’ cancer phase by inducing apoptosis (cell death), autophagy (degradation of cell components), and cell-cycle inhibition and by inhibiting the progression of tumours from benign to malignant.
Broccoli sulforaphane slows and reverses cancer growth
Sulforaphane can inhibit angiogenesis (blood vessel formation) which is required for a tumour to grow above the critical size of 1-2 mm. Sulforaphane can inhibit several metastatic processes including the escape of cancer cells from the original tumour. Sulforaphane significantly reduces the formation of carcinogen-DNA adducts in human mammary cells, reducing the risk of breast cancer. This stops the cancer being replicated. Sulforaphane interacts with genes involved in cancer development and prevents them from triggering cancer growth. It protects and supports the gene PTEN, which stops prostate cancer from developing.
Broccoli sulforaphane prevents heart disease and heart damage
Sulforaphane can help prevent vascular disease in diabetes. Sulforaphane activates a specific heart-protecting protein, Nrf2, which is known to be inactive in areas of the cardiovascular system that are predisposed to plaque buildup. Sulforaphane reduces oxidative stress, reduces free radicals, and reduces the damage caused to the arteries and the heart by diseases such as diabetes. People who live to 100 have lower levels of oxidative stress than those who live to 70. The bioavailability of sulforaphane is around 37% from the raw vegetable, and only 3.4% from cooked broccoli.
Broccoli protects against sun damage from UV radiation
Broccoli protects your skin from aging and sunlight. Broccoli extract reduces the reddening of the skin by up to 37%. Sulforaphane strengthens the cell’s innate protective system and defenses against UV damage. There are currently no drugs that can stop the Akt3 protein which triggers melanoma growth. However, isothiocyanates and selenium (both in broccoli) significantly reduce the production of Akt3 protein, rendering it far less dangerous.
Broccoli lowers almost all disease risk
Broccoli can help protect against asthma, lung disease and respiratory inflammation. Broccoli lowers arthritic pain and inflammation. Broccoli strengthens and effectively rejuvenates your immune system, keeping you younger, for longer and reducing the impact of aging. Broccoli helps in fighting Crohn’s disease. Thiocyanates can treat and help prevent inflammation-based disorders such as cystic fibrosis (CF), diabetes, heart disease, and neurodegeneration. Broccoli can reduce Helicobacter pylori infections and offer protection against stomach ulcers. DIM (diindolylmethane, in broccoli) induces higher levels of reactive oxygen that can help to crush free radicals and protect the system from cell-damage and degeneration.
Broccoli, Cubby Broccoli…
The coolest thing about broccoli is that Cubby Broccoli (the famous force behind the James Bond movies), used to push a wheelbarrow full of broccoli into the town market to sell, as a young boy. Nobody wanted them and he would end up throwing them away, “Oh well, guess I’ll make spy movies then…”
The research, studies and food recommendations from the WCRF & AICR 2018, to help lower your risk of, and to prevent, breast cancer, are built around following; a no-alcohol, plant-based wholefood diet.
The Associations between Food, Nutrition and Physical Activity and the Risk of Breast Cancer – World Cancer Research Fund International Systematic Literature Review 2017
Diet, Nutrition, Physical Activity and Cancer: a Global Perspective (the Third Expert Report – 2019) is a comprehensive analysis, using the most meticulous methods, of the worldwide body of evidence on preventing and surviving cancer through diet, nutrition and physical activity. It builds on the ground-breaking achievements of the First and Second Expert Reports, published in 1997 and 2007 respectively.
World Cancer Research Fund & American Institute for Cancer Research UPDATE Cancer-Prevention-Recommendations-2018
There is a vast amount of evidence that eating a plant-based wholefood diet lowers, and in some cases, reverses, heart disease and hypertension. This has been shown in the fasting studies, the chicken studies, the saturated fats studies, the fibre studies, the plant-based eating studies, and of course, the meat-is-directly-linked-to-heart-disease studies.
Plant-Based Diets & the Risk of Coronary Heart Disease – Journal of the American College of Cardiology
A healthy plant-based diet is simply mostly eating ‘plant-based wholefoods’ – such as apples rather than apple juice – as these are plant foods in their natural state, unrefined, and with their natural fibres, antioxidants, polyphenols, vitamins and minerals intact. Eat mostly plant foods, mostly wholefoods, and you receive the benefits, as the centenarian cultures do.
Jason wishes to deeply thank, acknowledge and recognise the effort and contribution that the PIF Foundation has provided on a voluntary basis since 2014, as we educated, motivated and inspired change that helps transform the health, vitality and longevity of people all over the world.