Broccoli contains 135% of a person’s daily recommended intake (RDI). But is eating broccoli anti-aging? Can it help to slow down the aging process? No miracle food can actually “stop” the aging process. However, if you eat a combination of anti-aging foods you can slow down aging and possibly extend your lifespan. Meanwhile, eating the “wrong” foods can have the opposite effect and cause you to develop signs of premature aging.
Broccoli is super-healthy for various reasons. It’s low in calories and carbs so it’s ideal if you want to lose weight and burn fat. The green vegetable also has a sky-high amount of Vitamin C and a good amount of other vitamins/minerals. However, it’s the Vitamin C that provides the biggest health benefits. It’s not only a vitamin but also an antioxidant that can help to fight aging through healthier skin, hair, and heart. You also get other benefits like anti-inflammatory properties. This is important since inflammation can trigger various illnesses/diseases like type-2 diabetes, heart disease, and serious mental conditions.
What Exactly Is Broccoli?
This is one of the cruciferous veggies, which also includes other options like cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, and cabbage. Both broccoli and cauliflower are superfoods that are loaded with nutrients like vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Broccoli is one of the most popular veggies found in the produce section of supermarkets. The history of broccoli as healthy food dates back to the Roman Empire. When it was introduced to England during the mid-1700s it was known as “Italian asparagus.”
The food didn’t become very popular in the USA until nearly a century ago in the 1920s. Broccoli was first grown in the Mediterranean Region and originally in Italy.
Broccoli is low-calorie and high-water like other vegetables. This is a plus if you’re dieting since you can eat lots and not worry about going over 2,000 calories. For example, 1 cup of raw broccoli has around 30 calories.
It’s also a low-carb food if you’re on the Keto or Atkins diet, for example. When you subtract the fiber you get about 3.5g of net carbs, which is quite low when you’re allowed 50g of carbs on the regular Keto and Atkins program.
Besides being low in calories and carbs, broccoli is high in vitamins/minerals. That includes over 100% of your daily Vitamin C and Potassium and a good amount of other nutrients like Vitamin A. There’s also a small number of other vitamins/minerals.
Various studies show that broccoli might also provide other benefits including:
- Lower cholesterol
- Strengthen bones
- Increase weight loss
- Boost immune system
- Fight cancer
More research is needed to verify these benefits. However, if you just go by the many nutrients contained in broccoli there’s no question it’s a superfood and one you should consider adding to your daily diet. There are also several ways to consume it including raw, steamed, boiled, baked, and fried.
Top Possible Broccoli Anti-Aging Benefits
1. Fight free radicals
This is one of the main benefits of high-antioxidant food like broccoli. This helps to fight free radicals, which could be a possible cause of aging. There’s some debate about this issue. However, no question fighting free radicals is important for good overall health.
2. Healthier immune system
This is due to the high Vitamin C content in broccoli. It includes over 100% of the vitamin required daily. A healthy immune system can help to fight off free radicals. These molecules attack healthy cells which can cause various health issues.
3. Improved brain/heart function
There are various chemical compounds in broccoli that could slow down mental decline. The superfood might also help to boost the function of the brain and central nervous system (CNS). Various studies show that the superfood might help to reduce age-related mental decline. Broccoli might also help to improve heart health.
4. Healthy bones/joints
Broccoli might help to increase bone/joint health, which are key anti-aging benefits. This is due to broccoli containing high amounts of Vitamin K (potassium) and calcium. These are 2 important nutrients for strong/healthy bones.
Broccoli also contains other nutrients for healthy bones. They include Vitamins A/C, zinc, and phosphorous.
5. UV Protection
Broccoli might safeguard the skin from UV damage. In recent years sun cancer has become a bigger threat due to factors like increased exposure to UV rays. Studies show that that broccoli has chemical compounds that might help to protect the body from damage from UV rays. This might help prevent skin cancer.
Some human studies have shown these benefits. They show that broccoli extract can provide some protection from skin damage and lower the risk of skin cancer after sun/UV exposure. More research is required so health experts understand how broccoli might provide UV protection.
Broccoli: Nutrition Facts
Here’s what you get from 1 cup of broccoli:
There are only 31 calories in this serving of broccoli. It’s just 1% on a 2,000-calorie diet. Due to the super-low amount of calories you can add other ingredients to your broccoli and not worry about consuming close to your 2,000 calories for the day. This provides more leeway over higher-calorie foods.
There’s 6g of total carbs. However, when you subtract the 2.6g of fiber you get about 3.5g of net carbs. That’s quite low and even Keto-friendly. The fiber doesn’t count as carbs since it’s not digested. If you’re on a diet that allows 50g of carbs then you’ll have lots of room to add other food for the day.
There’s just 0.3g of fat, which is super-low for any food. If you’re on a low-carb diet you can get more healthy fat by adding options like lean meat or cheese. This will help to boost the healthy fat intake for the day, which is critical since Keto puts fat at about 70% of total calories.
The superfood provides 2.6g of protein. This is a relatively high amount for a veggie. However, most “complete proteins” are animal-sourced, including meat, fish, eggs, and dairy. However, you can still add some protein to your daily total to help you get enough for your daily intake.
There’s 2.4g of fiber, which provides various benefits. Fiber is critical for digestion and is critical for helping to process food faster and prevent digestion issues like constipation.
Vitamins and minerals
You get a sky-high amount of Vitamin C (135% DV) in particular. There’s also a good amount of Vitamin K, B9, A, and minerals like phosphorus and selenium. These are all critical to provide health benefits and get all the nutrients you need with help from broccoli anti-aging.