The link between blood vessel health and cruciferous vegetables
(NaturalHealth365) You probably still hear echoes of your mother in your head: “Eat your vegetables.” It turns out that your mom knew what she was talking about. Studies continue to prove our mothers right – vegetables offer excellent health benefits. In fact, some of the vegetables we like the least might actually be extremely beneficial in preventing blood vessel disease, lowering the risk of heart events, and boosting liver health.
One new study published in the British Journal of Nutrition discovered that eating more cruciferous vegetables like Brussels sprouts, cabbage, and broccoli is associated with blood vessel disease that’s less extensive in aging women. Their discovery has some serious implications for the health benefits of getting those cruciferous veggies daily, particularly since blood vessel disease results in risks for others serious health problems.
Cruciferous vegetables linked to blood vessel health and lower risk of stroke and heart attack
Blood vessel disease – a problem that affects the veins and arteries – has the potential to reduce blood flow throughout your body. This may be because of the buildup of calcium or fatty deposits on the interior walls of blood vessels, and that buildup may result in adverse heart events like stroke and heart attack.
In previous studies, researchers discovered that a higher intake of cruciferous vegetables was linked to a lower risk of having cardiovascular disease events like stroke and heart attack. However, they weren’t sure why. Now, this new study showing how these vegetables are linked to blood vessel health explains those earlier findings.
Researchers looked at a group of 684 older women in Western Australia. Those who consumed a minimum of 45 grams of cruciferous vegetables daily – which equals about ½ cup of raw cabbage or a ¼ cup of steamed broccoli) were 46 percent less likely to deal with extensive calcium buildup in the aorta compared to women eating few to no cruciferous vegetables.
While cruciferous vegetables were the highlight of this study, they’re not the only vegetables we should focus on. According to lead researchers, it’s essential to eat a wide variety of vegetables daily to enjoy better health.
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Protect your liver health by eating the right veggies
Beyond improving blood vessel health and lowering the risk of heart attack and stroke, studies also show that eating cruciferous veggies can offer significant liver benefits. A study published in the journal Hepatology earlier this year found that indole – found in veggies like broccoli and cauliflower – may help control nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.
Previous research had found that eating broccoli sprouts helped improve overall liver function.
No doubt: from improving blood vessel health to lowering the risk of heart attack to offering liver benefits, cruciferous veggies will provide many health benefits. Along with broccoli, additional cruciferous vegetables you can add to your diet include cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, organic kale, and cabbage.
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