Cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable belonging to the Brassicaceae family. Its color ranges from white, orange to green and purple. It is rich in dietary fiber, folate, vitamin C, water and phytochemicals whereas low in fat and carbohydrates. Steaming, stir frying and microwaving are better methods to prevent nutrition loss of cauliflower while cooking as compared to boiling. Sulforaphane, glucosinolates, carotenoids and indole-3-carbinol present in cauliflowers offer many health benefits.
Health benefits of Cauliflower
- Reduces risk of cancer: A study depicted that consumption of half a cup of cauliflower a day reduces risk of prostate cancer in men by 52%. Antioxidant phytonutrients like beta-carotene, beta-cryptoxanthin, caffeic acid, cinnamic acid, ferulic acid etc. and glucosinolates present in the vegetable inhibit cellular oxidative stress thereby helping to prevent cancers of bladder, breast, colon, ovary and lung.
- It can improve Platelet Count & help to treat ITP
- · Good for our stomach: Glucoraphanin in cauliflower forms a protective coating on the lining of our stomach and prevents helicobacter pylori infections thereby lowering occurrence of stomach ulcers and cancers. High amount of fiber in cauliflower is beneficial for easing constipation and irritable bowel syndrome.
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- · Beneficial for our cardiovascular and cerebrovascular system: Its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties are beneficial for our blood vessels which in turn maintain healthy blood circulation throughout the body. Sulforaphane present in cauliflower stimulate anti-inflammatory activities in our cardiovascular and cerebrovascular system. All this help to prevent stroke, heart disease and atherosclerosis.
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- · Due to its anti-inflammatory benefits its consumption is useful for people suffering from arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, diabetes mellitus, ulcerative colitis and gout. Omega 3 fatty acids, a glucosinolate called glucobrassicin and vitamin k present in it eases chronic inflammation.
- Benefits for pregnant women: Folate present in cauliflower is beneficial to prevent birth defects like spina bifida and low birth weight of the neonate.
- Vitamin C content of cauliflower is good to enhance body’s natural resistance towards common cold and flu.
- Good for our bones: The substantial amount of vitamin K and boron present in cauliflower promotes absorption of calcium and magnesium thereby making our bones stronger and healthier. This helps to prevent diseases like osteoporosis and arthritis.
- Aids detoxification of liver: Glutathione and sulfur compounds present in cauliflower assist liver in detoxifying and excreting toxic materials from the body which is important for inhibiting carcinogens and preventing cancer.
- Cauliflower can be an important component of diet for weight loss as it has no fat, has very low calories and is fiber rich. High fiber content will make you feel fuller for long and prevent overeating.
- Fat soluble di-indolyl-methane abundant in cauliflower makes it beneficial for treating repeated occurrence of respiratory papillomatosis that is caused by Human Papilloma Virus.
- The vitamin C in cauliflower is beneficial in reducing wheezing in children.
Caution: Too much consumption of cauliflower is also not good as it interferes with iodine absorption in our body, increases intestinal gas and also reduces effectiveness of blood thinning drug Coumadin as it contains large amount of vitamin K.
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