A growing interest in natural foods and cures over the last thirty years has once again placed a focus on the importance of eating fresh vegetables and fruits. Broccoli sprouts are one of the foods that natural medicine experts believe to contain particularly valuable substances. In particular, researchers have found some evidence suggesting that this foodstuff might help ward off malignant illnesses, but it requires much more research to reach a definitive conclusion.

Rich in sulforaphane

One of the principal claims for the health benefits of broccoli sprouts rests on the fact that they contain high amounts of the sulforaphane substance. The researchers discovered that one ounce of broccoli sprouts contain as much as twenty times the amount of sulforaphane they found in the whole broccoli. The tests they made on laboratory mice suggest that this richness in sulforaphane helps prevent malignant growths. The validity of these findings for human health is subject to speculation.



A healthy way to lower cholesterol

Large amounts of fried and junk foods in daily diets and a lack of exercise contribute to a situation where so many people in western countries suffer from high cholesterol. The human body needs a certain level of cholesterol, but problems occur when the LDL (usually labeled as the bad cholesterol) is greatly out of proportion with the HDL (or good) cholesterol. It seems that broccoli spouts help lower LDL and increase HDL so they might help reduce the risks of artery blockage and heart attacks linked to dangerously high cholesterol.



Good for people with rheumatoid arthritis

Believers in the efficacy of broccoli sprouts claim that their anti-inflammatory properties can benefit people with rheumatoid arthritis. They also state that the sulforaphane these sprouts contain helps the body to fight off this disease. The extent that including this food in meal plans helps is a matter of contention without backing from recognized medical studies, but it is undoubtedly safe to experiment and discover if these vegetables do help.



Could be of benefit to diabetics

People with diabetes are more aware than most about how foods affect health since they need to keep tight control over their diets. Experiments made with animals indicate that sulforaphane could help to stabilize blood glucose and heightened sensitivity to insulin. Even more encouraging are results from trials done on humans that showed how diabetics Type 2 sufferers who eat broccoli spouts recorded improved responses to insulin and lower blood sugar rates while fasting.

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Helpful in the fight against drug addiction

The idea of any possible connection between broccoli sprouts and the fight against drug addiction might seem to have come from the realm of fantasy, yet we all know that facts can be stranger than fiction. One of the many benefits of the high sulforaphane in broccoli sprouts is that this substance also serves as an HDAC inhibitor. Tests on laboratory mice showed that HDAC inhibitor reduced cocaine addiction so there are hopes that same results will appear with humans.



Might aid in the fight against obesity

Concerns over obesity issues have come to the forefront in western countries; Medical authorities are particularly worried about the growing percentage of children who now suffer from this health problem. The principal keys to reducing weight remain exercise and meal plan changes. Natural food advocates argue that the sulforaphane in broccoli sprouts helps the body to lose weight, so they encourage anyone with a weight issue to add them to their diet menu.



Improve resistance to degenerative diseases

The struggle to control and eventually defeat degenerative diseases is another of the twenty-first century's major health concerns. The large amount of sulforaphane found in broccoli sprouts increases the amount of glutathione in the body, and this substance slows down declines in cognitive abilities. There is some evidence that sulforaphane also helps improve the condition of patients with traumatic brain injuries. This leads many to hope it could at least help delay the mental decline that comes with Alzheimer's and comparable degenerative illnesses.



Possible benefits to people with mental health issues

The large numbers of patients who seek medication for depression, anxiety, and other emotional illnesses raises interest in any natural substances able to reduce these kinds of problems. Scientists noticed how sulforaphane seems to have calming and other positive effects on the behavior of laboratory mice in a stressed condition. Based on the results of these experiments performed on the mice there are grounds for hoping that depressed humans could get similar benefits. However, there remains a long way to go from potential to a proven fact.



Rich in essential vitamins

The lively market for vitamin supplements testifies to the wide recognition of how important it is to maintain a healthy vitamin balance. While these supplements help in many cases, nobody disputes the fact that it is better to get your vitamins from the food supply rather than in pill form. Broccoli sprouts stand out as a vegetable that is particularly rich in essential minerals. The Vitamin C they contain helps the body grown and to stay healthy. Vitamin E improves the body's immunity, while Vitamin A enhances night vision capabilities. The sprouts also boost the calcium the body needs for strong bones and healthy teeth.



Assists the natural detoxification process

If you live in an urban and industrialized environment and follow the healthiest of diets, it is next to impossible to protect the body against toxins found in car fumes, agricultural pesticides, and other common pollutants. Broccoli sprouts assist the body in cleansing itself from these kinds of poisons. When you chew or swallow these sprouts, it brings high quantities of sulforaphane into your body, and this gives a much-needed boost to its detoxification capabilities.



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