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Health Benefits of Green Peas and Broccoli



by Dr. Mercola [1]

A compound in broccoli, glucosinolate, produces a metabolite called sulforaphane that is responsible for many of broccoli’s health-promoting properties.

Sulforaphane has been shown to have anti-diabetic and antimicrobial properties, and also kills cancer stem cells, which strikes to the heart of tumor malignancy. It can also significantly improve your blood pressure and kidney function, among other benefits.

Broccoli Sprouts – Another Way to Increase Your Intake of Glucoraphanin

Small quantities of fresh broccoli sprouts actually contain as much cancer protection as larger amounts of the mature vegetable.

According to researchers at Johns Hopkins University. Just 5 grams (0.17 ounces) of sprouts contain concentrations of the compound glucoraphanin equal to that found in 150 grams (5.2 ounces) of mature broccoli.

In fact, their research showed that 3-day-old sprouts of both broccoli and cauliflower may contain anywhere from 10 to 100 times higher levels of glucoraphanin than the corresponding mature plants!2

So if you’re looking for an inexpensive superfood, sprouts are it. An article published last year3 listed 10 reasons for eating sprouts, including the following:

Peas May Fight Cancer, Inflammation, Diabetes and More

Peas, a type of legume, are also packed with some of nature’s most potent disease-fighting compounds, including a polyphenol called coumestrol. Research has shown that those with the highest intakes of coumestrol and other natural plant chemicals called polyphenols had a 50 percent lower risk of stomach cancer.4

Other phytonutrients in peas, including saponins, phenolic acids like ferulic and caffeic acid, and flavanols like catechin and epicatechin, have also been shown to offer powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits, and may be responsible for peas’ beneficial impact on diabetes.5 Green peas are also unique in their relatively large amounts of protein and fiber, which may help with blood sugar regulation. Interestingly, peas also impart many benefits to the environment in which they’re grown. For example:6

Pea Sprouts Are Also a Phenomenal Superfood

As mentioned earlier regarding broccoli sprouts, pea sprouts are also an incredibly nutritious superfood that have more concentrated nutrition than most mature vegetables. While you can sprout a variety of different beans, nuts, seeds and grains, sprouts in general have the following beneficial attributes:

I started sprouting seeds in ball jars 10 to 15 years ago, but now grow pea sprouts, sunflower seed sprouts, wheat grass and other varieties in soil using plastic trays. Some of the most commonly sprouted beans, nuts, seeds and grains include:

My two favorites are pea and sunflower sprouts, as they provide some of the highest quality protein you can eat. Sprouts have radically improved the nutrition of my primary meal, which is a salad at lunch, and they are also a perfect complement to fermented vegetables. It is hard to imagine a healthier combination that provides the essentials of nutrition very inexpensively. I plan on producing some videos on how to grow them later this year, but for now you can see my recent article that extols their benefits [2].

Which Other Vegetables Are the ‘Best’ to Eat?

There’s little doubt that one of the best ways to improve your health is to make sure you’re eating plenty of fresh, minimally processed high-quality vegetables, ideally locally-grown and organic, with a majority of them consumed raw.

My Recommended Vegetables List [3] provides a guide to the most nutritious vegetables and those to limit due to their high carbohydrate content. Broccoli is certainly on the most nutritious list, but so are many others like celery, Bok Choy and beet greens. Remember, variety is key. So while broccoli and peas were the focus of this article, they should be part of a wide variety of vegetables and legumes in your diet.

Generally speaking, the greener the vegetable, the more nutritious it will be, although red and orange vegetables, like peppers and certain varieties of chard, are also extremely healthful.

Sprouting is undoubtedly one of the best ways to increase the nutritional content of your veggie intake even further, but there are other “tricks” you can use as well. Fermented veggies [4] are another outstanding superfood, as is fresh vegetable juice. Both fermented vegetables and juicing organic vegetables [5] are highly recommended to patients in our clinic who are working to restore or improve their health.

Read the Full Article Here: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/04/29/green-peas-broccoli-sprouts.aspx [1]