Cruciferous What?


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By: Nikki Nies

Cruciferous vegetables are not a household phrase, but I’m hoping you have plenty of them in your fridge.  The word cruciferous derives from Latin origin, meaning “cross bearing” as the shape of their petals resemble a cross.  Specifically, cruciferous vegetables include kale, broccoli, cabbage, brussel sprouts, bok choy, cauliflower, turnips, collard greens, arugula, horseradish, rutabaga, radishes, watercress and wasabi.

Not only can cruciferous vegetables be incorporated in daily meals in a variety of ways, but have ample nutritional benefits.  They are rich in fiber, vitamin A and C, and phytochemicals that are known to have cancer protective qualities (i.e. diindolylmethane, sulforaphane and selenium).  Cruciferous vegetables also can lower one’s risk of cardiovascular disease, decrease oxidative stress and type II diabetes,

Per 1 cup:
Broccoli
Cauliflower
Cabbage
B. Sprouts
Bok Choy
Kale
(steamed) (frozen, cooked) (raw) (cooked) (cooked) (cooked)
Calories 44 34 22 60 20 36
Fiber 5g 5 2 4 3 3
Vitamin A 33% DV 1% 2% 16% 62% 137%
Vitamin B-2 16% 9% 3% 11% 10% 8%
Vitamin B-6 17% 12% 7% 21% 22% 14%
Vitamin C 165% 75% 38% 129% 59% 71%
Folic Acid 23% 18% 10% 23% 17% 4%
Magnesium 12% 5% 4% 10% 6% 7%
Potassium 14% 7% 6% 14% 18% 8%
Omega-3s 200 mg 140 mg 60 mg 260 mg 100 mg 100 mg

Aim to have at least one-two servings of cruciferous vegetables daily and you’re on your way to fulfilling your recommended vegetable intake.

Sources: http://advanceuc.com/cruciferous-vegetables-are-cancer-protective

http://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/features/super-veggies-cruciferous-vegetables

http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/diet/cruciferous-vegetables

http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=btnews&dbid=126

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