Cruciferous vegetables have some amazing qualities that can contribute to your ultimate health. Cruciferous is the word used to describe vegetables that are related to the cabbage family.
They are loaded with soluble fiber, vitamin C, several minerals and phytochemicals. In addition to vitamins K, A and C, they also contain higher amounts of folic acid, when compared to many other classes of vegetables.

The cabbage family includes:
Broccoli
Cauliflower
Bok choy
Kohlrabi
Arugula
Brussels sprouts
Mustard greens
Collard Greens
Kale
Choy sum
Turnip root
Rutabaga
Mizuna
Chinese cabbage
Napa cabbage
Komatsuna

Cruciferous vegetables are nutrient dense foods, but some are higher in certain minerals and vitamins than others. But all cruciferous vegetables share similar health benefits. As with many leafy green veggies, cruciferous vegetables have alkalizing effects on the body. These veggies make it difficult for inflammation to thrive in the body, thus, reducing the risk and symptoms associated with chronic diseases and certain types of cancer.

There are many different ways that toxins can enter the body and be stored. Because of this, the body had to evolve to develop ways to rid it of these dangerous chemicals. Cruciferous veggies play a supportive role in that they have nutrients that act as regulators of detoxification. This allows the body to get rid of toxins in a balanced manner, not overcommitting limited resources while ignoring the dangers of another toxin.

For both women and men, cruciferous veggies promote hormonal balance, especially for estrogen. The key is because of the chemical compound called indole-3-carbinol. This compound is able to alter estrogen metabolism, aiding in the balance of estrogens while hindering abnormal cell growths that lead to cancer.

The detoxification process is so very important because of our consumption of certain processed foods and also our exposure to the plastic bottles that we drink from. Plastics, especially softer plastics, have been shown to contain chemicals that mimic the body’s natural hormone process, which can lead to a dangerous overload of estrogens in the body. These overloads, without proper detoxification, have been a major concern and risk factor for both breast and prostate cancers.

Even though consuming these “super veggies” is wonderful, some research does show that overloading on cruciferous vegetables can actually hinder thyroid function for some individuals. So, of course, as with everything, balance is key and too much of one thing can be, well, too much. Including a variety of colorful vegetables in your daily diet is your best bet for better health.