“I do not like broccoli. And I haven’t liked it since I was a little kid and my mother made me eat it. And I’m President of the United States and I’m not going to eat any more broccoli.” George H. W. Bush
The above quote was made when then President Bush banned broccoli from being served on Air Force One. While I can certainly understand not like something – sauerkraut has never been served in my home – President Bush was definitely missing out on a good thing with broccoli. It has been touted as a super vegetable.
- Potassium – helps maintain a healthy nervous system and optimal brain function, promote regular muscle growth
- Magnesium and calcium – helps regulate blood pressure
- Vitamin C – fights free radicals and effective antihistamine for easing discomfort of common cold
- Vitamin K and calcium – important for bone health and prevention of osteoporosis
- Beta-carotene, zinc, and selenium – strengthen immune defense actions
- Glucoraphanin – processed by the body into sulforaphane which rids the body of H. pylori, a bacterium found to highly increase risk of gastric cancer
- Fiber – aids in digestion, maintains low blood sugar, and curbs overeating.
- Carotenoid lutein – helps prevent age related macular degeneration and cataracts and may also slow down or prevent thickening of arteries.
- B6 and folate reduce risk of atherosclerosis, heart attack, and stroke.
So, before you side with President Bush and ban broccoli from your home, consider the many health benefits this vegetable offers. Maybe with a little bit of garlic and parmesan cheese you’ll be able to consume this veggie and reap the benefits of this super food.
Submitted by Tina Comston, M.Ed.