Brussels sprouts are leafy green cruciferous vegetables belonging to the Brassica family. They are very rich in vitamin C and K and also have substantial quantities of vitamin A, E, B1, B2 and folate. Good amounts of minerals like iron, phosphorous, potassium, calcium, manganese, magnesium as well as protein and dietary fiber are also present in Brussels sprouts. Healthy phytochemicals like glucosinolates, coumarins, sulforaphane, indoles, isothiocynates, dithiolthiones, and phenols are also present in the vegetable.
Brussels Sprouts Health benefits
- Lowers blood cholesterol levels: Rich in dietary fiber Brussels sprouts help to control our blood cholesterol levels thereby keeping conditions like atherosclerosis, heart attack and stroke at bay. The fiber adheres to the bile acids that are synthesized by the liver using cholesterol for fat digestion. As a result of this adherence more cholesterol is used by the liver to produce more bile acid to digest fat. This results in substantial reduction in blood cholesterol levels.
- Anti-inflammatory benefits: The vegetable is rich in a glucosinolate called glucobrassicin as well as omega-3 fatty acids and Vitamin K that effectively control and reduce inflammation. Proper consumption may help reduce the risk of inflammatory conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, insulin resistance, obesity, type 2 diabetes, Crohn’s disease, inflammatory bowel disorder, irritable bowel syndrome, metabolic syndrome, and ulcerative colitis.
- Helps to cure sarcoidosis cure.
- Helps in digestion and controls weight gain: Brussels sprouts are rich in fiber but have low glycemic index. This helps in easy digestion, fighting constipation and keeping a check at our blood sugar levels and overeating. Sulphoraphane present in the vegetable inhibits H. pylori bacteria infections from affecting the stomach and therefore helps prevent bloating, belching, nausea, ulcers and stomach cancer.
- Good for our cardiovascular system: Anti-inflammatory and cholesterol controlling properties of Brussels sprout make it a cardiovascular system friendly vegetable negating risks of heart attack, ischemic heart disease and atherosclerosis.
- Anti-cancer benefits: Antioxidant vitamins A, C and E as well as the mineral manganese and flavonoid antioxidants like isorhamnetin, quercitin, and kaempferol present in Brussels spouts safeguard us from cancer of prostate, ovary, lung, colon and bladder. Moreover, Glucoside sinigrin present in Brussels sprouts kill pre-carcinogenic cells in the colon.
- Enhances immunity: Abundant vitamin C present in Brussels sprouts increases internal resistance of the body to fight infections thereby keeping common cold and flu at bay.
- Good for our eyes: The high amounts of Vitamin A present in this leafy vegetable is very good for our eyes as it helps to protect against night blindness, glaucoma and age related macular degeneration.
- The vitamin K rich vegetable is good for our bones as it helps in formation and strengthening of bones and enhances calcium absorption. It also prevents nerve damage in brain. These properties help to safeguard us from osteoporosis and Alzheimer’s disease.
- Various minerals present in Brussels sprout protect us against iron deficiency anemia, high blood pressure, aging, increased heart rate and toxicity.
Caution: Excessive consumption of Brussels sprouts which is rich in vitamin K is not good for heart patients who are taking anticoagulant drugs.