Dr. Robert Cook - Is It Bad For You? Approved by Dr. Robert Cook

Is Broccoli Bad For You?



Short answer

Broccoli is wonderful for you. Yes, it may cause some discomfort, as anything high in fiber can do so, but it is an all-star when it comes to your overall health.



Long answer

Broccoli is one of the best vegetables you can eat.  Other than the risk of becoming gassy or having to use the toilet due to its high fiber content, there is nothing bad that can be said about broccoli (other than its taste, which is purely subjective).  Broccoli may help prevent cancer, boost immunity, improve your cardiovascular system, lower cholesterol, and have a host of other benefits.

The first thing most people think of when healthy food comes to mind is the nutritional value.  Broccoli is low in fat (only 0.5 gram per medium-sized stalk), contains no cholesterol, and is low in sodium.  Broccoli is rich in vitamin C, containing twice the amount needed per day, and contains vitamins K, B6, and A as well.  Minerals such as potassium, calcium, and iron are also present in sizable amounts.  Besides their well-known benefits of protecting the eyes and aiding in calcium transport respectively, vitamins A and K are also synergistic in helping with the metabolism of vitamin D.  The fiber in broccoli, which is soluble, binds to cholesterol and forces it out of the body, thus lowering overall cholesterol levels and helping to prevent plaque from building up in the arteries.  

Broccoli also contains carotenoids such as beta-carotene and zeaxanthin as well as flavonoids such as kaempferol which help the immune system continue to function at an optimal level.  Also good for the immune system is lutein, an antioxidant that aids in the fight against free radicals. Like all other cruciferous vegetables, broccoli may help prevent stomach and intestinal cancers, while its isothiocyanates may help reduce the risk of breast cancer.

Yet another benefit comes from its B-complex vitamins, such as B6, which possibly help to regulate the amino acid homocysteine, the excess of which increases the risk of coronary artery disease. So, back to the question. Brocolli is not bad for you. In fact, it is the complete opposite and should be included in any balanced diet. 

Possible short-term side effects

  • gassiness / disturb the bowels due to high fiber content

Big is broccoli bad for you 2


  • boosts the immune system
  • reduces risk of cancer
  • reduces risk of heart disease
  • lowers "bad" cholesterol
  • may help prevent macular degeneration
  • may help to slow and prevent osteoarthritis
  • promotes proper kidney function

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Written by Jeff Volling | 12-31-2015

Written by Jeff Volling
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