Have you ever wondered why it’s so important to consume healthy amounts of cruciferous vegetables? The short answer is sulforaphane. Sulforaphane is a glucosinolate found in cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli and brocoli sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, bok choy, kale, collards, mustard greens, and watercress. It has been reported to exhibit a wide range of biological effects including antioxidant (Fahey and Talalay, 1999), antimicrobial (Johansson et al., 2008), anticancer (Amjad et al., 2015), anti-inflammatory (Greaney et al., 2016), anti-aging (Sikdar et al., 2016), neuroprotective (Tarozzi et al., 2013), and antidiabetic (Lee et al., 2012). Sulforaphane also shows a range of biological activities and health benefits in humans, and is found to be a very promising chemopreventive agent against not only a variety of cancers such as breast, prostate, colon, skin, lung, stomach, and bladder but also against cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases and diabetes (Yang et al., 2016). As you can see, there are many powerful health benefits of sulforaphane. Let’s look at 9 Powerful Health Benefits of Sulforaphone.
Which Vegetable Contains the Most Sulforaphane?
Broccoli sprouts is definitely the winner in this category. Broccoli sprouts contain 100-400 times the content of sulforaphane compared to other cruciferous vegetables! While mature broccoli is a source of sulforaphanes, sprouts can have as much as 25 times more sulforaphanes than their fully grown broccoli. Health promoting amounts of broccoli sprouts can range from 40 to 60mg of sulforaphane, which is roughly 100 to 140g of broccoli sprouts.
9 Powerful Health Benefits of Sulforaphane
Studies find that sulforaphane inhibits growth of Heliobacter pylori which causes ulcers and certain cancers.
Boosts Mitochondria Function
Sulforaphane promotes mitochondria biogenesis, improves ATP production, and helps neutralize reaction oxygen species produced by mitochondria.
Sulforaphane can suppress the proliferation of cancer cells and trigger cell death in cancer cells. There is an inverse relationship between eating cruiferous vegetable and cancer risk.
Protects Against Alzheimer’s
Oxidative stress and neuronal damage are two main causes of Alzheimer’s disease. Sulforaphane helps prevent both.
Liver Function & Detox
Supplementing with sulforaphane improves liver detoxification and function after two months while decreasing oxidative stress. Sulforaphane is identified as the most potent naturally occurring inducer of phase II enzymes (R). Dietary sulforaphane is known to protect against liver injuries caused by carbon tetrachloride, intestinal ischemia reperfusion, and cisplatin (R).
Sulforaphane has the ability to increase production of glutathione and SOD – powerful antioxidants produced by the body.
Sulforaphane can decrease inflammation by impeding the release of pro-inflammatory molecules.
Sulforaphane can lower blood lipids and help neutralize free radicals that lead to the development of arterial plaque.
Slows The Aging Process
Sulforaphane activates the Nrf2 pathway – the body’s strongest defense against oxidative stress, aging and weight loss.
Recent Studies on Biological and Pharmacological Activities of Sulforaphane (SFN)
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