Boost Your Brassicas for Hormonal Health
March 16, 2023
Boost Your Brassicas For Hormonal Health
Support balancing female hormones with brassica vegetables as part of your food plan. To help you choose natural plant foods to support your mid-life symptoms we are going to give you a snap-shot of … Boosting Brassicas for Hormonal Health … we’ll talk about:
· Why Brassicas are supportive of health, especially hormonal health
· How you can maximise their nutritional properties to get the best from them
· Ideas for your food plan
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Boost Your Brassicas for Hormonal Health
Brassicas – people either love them or hate them as they sometimes have a slightly bitter taste. There’s lots you can do to make them palatable and easy to include in your food plan, and it’s worth it as there are so many health benefits from eating them.
Nutrient Value of Brassicas include Vitamin C, K, A, B9 (folate) as well as being rich sources of potassium and phosphorus and contains smaller amounts of calcium, magnesium iron and zinc.
Brassicas are a good source of FIBRE which is important for the digestive system and will help you have regular bowel movements which is important for many reasons but will help with the elimination of excess hormones.
The Brassicas – An Undervalued Nutritional and Health Beneficial Plant Family a joint publication from The James Hutton Institute, Dundee and Herriot Watt University in Edinburgh. At the end of the pdf you’ll find some tables which list nutrient content of the different vegetables in this category.
What is it about brassica vegetables that is known to be supportive for hormone balance?
How to maximise the nutritional properties of brassicas with preparation and cooking methods.
Should we buy fresh or frozen?
Should we be concerned about packaged brassica vegetables and how should we store them at home?
How to cook brassicas to preserve nutrient status.
Introducing the HEALTHY WOMAN HEALTHY RUNNER PROGRAMME and an invitation to book a free DISCOVERY CALL.
Food tips on how to add brassicas into your food plan. We share ideas for raw and cooked dishes: soups, salads, and side dishes. We and talk about goitrogens in brassicas and the potential impact on thyroid health.
Any soup can be enhanced by adding some shredded greens like kale or broccoli or maybe tender stem. Add just before serving so the brassica vegetables are gently cooked.
Use a base of watercress and rocket with shredded cabbage and slices of radishes and top with sprouted broccoli seeds.
Steam some broccoli florets and keep in fridge to add to a superfood salad.
Favourite salads of ours are Kale, Avocado with Sun Dried Tomatoes or a raw Cauliflower Tabouleh.
Karen’s stir fry and steam cooking makes a delicious side dish of brassica vegetables.
Introducing Microgreens as a way of boosting nutrients. Beyond Microgreens sell products like Broccoli Boost and Radish Boost. They are a US based but health food suppliers sell their products around the world.
They also have some great blogs explaining about the nutritional properties of brassicas and how to grow your own sprouts.
ONE KEY ACTION
We suggest adding some of the brassicas to your shopping list and aiming for 3 portions of these vegetables every day … we hope we’ve given you all some tips on how to get the best out of eating brassica vegetables.
The key nutrients in brassicas are … Vitamin C, K, A, B9 (folate) as well as being rich sources of potassium and phosphorus and contains smaller amounts of calcium, magnesium iron and zinc.
Also brassicas are a good source of FIBRE which is important for the digestive system and will help you have regular bowel movements which is important for many reasons but will help with the elimination of excess hormones.
The compounds most beneficial to female health are Sulforophane which is metabolised from the glucosinolate family and also Indole-3-carbinol from the Indole group.
These compounds support hormonal balance, help to support optimal detoxification processes and they also play a role in oestrogen metabolism and therefore minimise symptoms related to female health and the menopause phase of life.
TIPS for getting the best nutrient value from Brassica vegetables
- Buy Whole Vegetables – the nutrient value of the glucosinolates, are more likely to be intact before processing so buying whole is advantageous. An enzyme called myrosinase contained within the plant, is activated by chopping or chewing the vegetable, and that process enables the formation of sulforophane. However the bioavailability of the nutrients is time limited, so if you buy prepared brassica vegetables it’s likely that enzymatic process will already have happened and you may miss out on the benefits. Our suggestion is to buy whole heads of broccoli and cauliflower rather than the prepared florets and whole kale leaves on stalks rather than shredded.
- Fresh over Frozen – the Scottish study mentioned earlier suggested that freezing brassica vegetables immediately after harvesting was an optimal way for maintaining the “at harvest” level of the health-beneficial glucosinolates, as well as for quality e.g. appearance, taste, texture etc. However, they also noted that this approach would involve some type of heat treatment such as blanching, which may lead to deactivating myrosinase and a reduction in sulphorophane. It’s good to be aware of this especially if you are looking for a therapeutic value from brassica vegetables.
- Avoiding Packaged Vegetables – they will have been exposed to the packaging, storage and transportation chain and the associated changes in temperature, humidity etc all of which may affect quality of nutrient value. Ideally shop at the market, a farm shop, local greengrocer, or farm delivery box and buy loose and unpackaged.
- Refrigerator Storage – there have been studies demonstrating that glucosinolate content declined more rapidly in broccoli stored at 20°C compared with broccoli stored at <4°C – over a 5-7 day period. So the advice is store brassicas in your fridge not at room temperature.
- Make steaming your cooking method of choice – microwaving, pressure cooking and boiling are all associated with significant losses of glucosinolates alongside loss of other nutrients. So choosing to steam brassica vegetables will help you maximise nutrient value. I sometime hear people say steaming is boring and tasteless but you can add seasoning and dressings after steaming to make them more flavoursome.
- Mix up your brassicas don’t just choose the same ones over and over – the range of brassica vegetables is wide and so as you would imagine the nutrient make up of each variety is slightly different – so you can maximise the full range of nutrients by eating a variety across the day and the week.