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Nutritional breakdown of broccoli
According to the USDA National Nutrient Database6, one cup of chopped raw broccoli (approximately 91 grams) contains 31 calories, 0 grams of fat, 6 grams of carbohydrate (including 2 grams of sugar and 2 grams of fiber) and 3 grams of protein.
Just one cup of broccoli provides over 100% of your daily need for vitamin C and vitamin K, and is also a good source of vitamin A, folate and potassium.
Broccoli ranks among the top 20 foods in regards to ANDI score (Aggregate Nutrient Density Index), which measures vitamin, mineral and phytonutrient content in relation to caloric content.
To earn high rank, a food must provide a high amount of nutrients for a small amount of calories.
How to incorporate more broccoli into your diet
Broccoli is famously one of the least favorite vegetables of many, along with its cruciferous cousin, Brussels sprouts. But what if you have just been storing and preparing it wrong?
Fresh, young broccoli should not taste fibrous, woody or sulfurous. To make sure you get the best tasting broccoli, store the unwashed vegetable in loose or perforated plastic bags in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator. Only wash broccoli right before eating, as wet broccoli can develop mold and become limp.
Broccoli left at room temperature becomes fibrous and woody. You may not be able to tell by looking, but the flavor of broccoli continues to diminish the older it gets.
Broccoli can be added to wraps, pasta, pizza or even made into a soup with onion and garlic.
Quick tips to enjoy more broccoli:
- Keep it simple and sauté chopped broccoli drizzled with olive oil, cracked black pepper and minced garlic
- Chop raw broccoli and add to your next wrap
- Top your flatbread or pizza with chopped broccoli before roasting
- Make your own pesto or pasta sauce and add broccoli.
Check out these healthy recipes using broccoli:Roasted broccoli chickpea burgers with spicy cashew mayo
Roasted broccoli with lemon tahini sauce
Broccoli cheddar quinoa pie
Broccoli, chickpea and brown rice bowl.
Possible health risks of consuming broccoli
If you are taking blood-thinners such as Coumadin (warfarin), it is important that you do not suddenly begin to eat more or less foods containing vitamin K, which plays a large role in blood clotting.
It is the total diet or overall eating pattern that is most important in disease prevention and achieving good health. It is better to eat a diet with a variety than to concentrate on individual foods as the key to good health.
If you have enjoyed reading about the potential health benefits of broccoli, take a look at our collection of articles about other fruits and vegetables.
Alternatively, read our article about the top 10 healthy foods for your daily diet.