Skip to comments.You May Not Like It, But Broccoli Can Beat Cancer
Posted on 12/06/2005 5:40:06 PM PST by blam
You may not like it, but broccoli can beat cancer
By Roger Highfield, Science Editor
A variety of "super broccoli" has been grown that may boost protection against cancer, scientists said yesterday.
The variety has higher levels of sulphoraphane and will help the half of the population which lacks a gene that allows the body to retain the protective plant chemical, they said.
Prof Richard Mithen, of the Institute of Food Research in Norwich and the lead scientist on the project, said yesterday: "Eating a few portions of broccoli each week may help to reduce the risk of cancer."
He said half of people appear to get less cancer protection from broccoli because they lack the gene GSTM1.
"Our studies suggest that this may be because if you lack the gene you cannot retain any sulphoraphane inside your body, it is all excreted within a few hours.
"But if you consume larger portions of broccoli, or broccoli with higher levels of sulphoraphane, such as the super broccoli, you may be able to retain as much sulphoraphane in your body as those who have the gene. Broccoli is also a rich source of other vitamins and minerals."
The super broccoli, which has been developed by traditional plant breeding methods, has 3.4 times more sulphoraphane than standard varieties. It has the same taste as regular broccoli and could be on sale "in a couple of years," Prof Mithen said.
Broccoli belongs to the crucifer family of plants which includes the brassicas cabbage, cauliflower and sprouts, as well as the closely related Chinese cabbage and turnips.
Crucifers contain high levels of glucosinolates, which release isothiocyanates - some of the most potent dietary anti-carcinogens known. Sulphoraphane is the main isothiocyanate derived from broccoli.
Although people who lack the GSTM1 gene may get less cancer protection from eating broccoli, it is likely that they will gain more protection from eating other types of crucifers. "So the best advice is to eat a mixture of crucifers," said Prof Mithen.
George Bush senior declared in the White House: "I do not like broccoli and I haven't liked it since I was a little kid and my mother made me eat it. I'm the president of the United States and I'm not going to eat any more broccoli." An agriculture lobby then sent several tons to him.
I love broccoli. Sometimes I eat it too.
Can they make a super Snickers?
"I'm the president of the United States and I'm not going to eat any more broccoli."
Somewhere, somehow these words need to be enshrined for future generations.
When I was a kid, broccoli was my favorite vegetable. Still is, but only when it's cooked to a nice mushiness.
Just put some cheese on it. Cheese, Gromit, that's the ticket!
Broccoli rules. Broccolini too. Supersize it and keep it coming. Next I want to see that rutabaga cures the common cold.
If only I could remember to get some.
Back in GHWB's day...broccoli was cooked to death. Then we went through a stage where it was too raw.
Properly cooked broccoli with a light dusting of (real) parmesan and a touch of lemon is magnificent!
I like broccoli :-)
Broccolini is the best.
Yeah, nice and tender. I'm feeling like getting up and making some right now.
"The news comes after a study into the health benefits of curcumin, found it has power to protect against the onset of Alzheimer's disease."
Nothing better.... only when covered in melted cheese and butter. Does that count?
Some football team should be named The Broccoli's.
Broccoli rocks. =P