(September 15, 2011 - Insidermedicine)
Combining broccoli with spicy myrosinase-containing foods results in a synergistic reaction that boosts production of the chemopreventive compound sulforaphane, according to research published online ahead of print in the British Journal of Nutrition.
Here are some recommended nutrition habits for cancer prevention, from the American Cancer Society:
• Eat five or more servings of a variety of vegetables and fruits each day.
• Choose whole grains in preference to processed (refined) grains.
• Limit consumption of processed and red meats.
Researchers out of the University of Illinois had four participants eat four meals, each one week apart. The meals consisted of dry cereal and yogurt with the addition of myrosinase-containing fresh broccoli sprouts equivalent to 70 micromole sulforaphane, broccoli powder containing glucoraphanin (GRP) equivalent to 120 micromole sulforaphane, both or neither. The investigators then measured metabolites of sulforaphane in the participants’ blood and urine.
After ingesting both broccoli sprouts and powder, 24-hour urinary recovery of metabolites of sulforaphane was 65%, compared with 60% following a meal containing broccoli sprouts alone and 24% for a meal containing powder alone. The appearance of sulforaphane in the blood and urine was delayed following the ingestion of broccoli powder, compared with ingestion of the sprouts and powder together. More rapid production of sulforaphane means it can be absorbed by the ilium, making it more bioavailable.
Today’s research provides insight into the synergistic potential of strategic combinations of foods.