9 Health benefits of broccoli sprouts (plus tips on how to grow them at home)
Young broccoli sprouts, which are around a week old when harvested, are filled with even more nutrients than fully mature broccoli. (1) These baby broccoli might look unassuming, but they outclass their grown-up counterparts in many ways, especially in terms of nutritional content and health benefits.
Broccoli sprouts are equipped with a lot of the nutrients they need in order to grow into mature broccoli. When they are between three to five days old, broccoli sprouts have already reached the peak of their nutritional content.
- According to a study by Johns Hopkins University, broccoli sprouts contain anywhere from 30 to 50 times the concentration of phytonutrients compared to mature broccoli heads. (2)
- Broccoli sprouts are rich in sulforaphane, glucosinolates and glucoraphanin. (3) These three beneficial compounds allow broccoli sprouts to provide many health benefits.
- Broccoli sprouts are a rich source of antioxidants and other nutrients like vitamins A, C and K; magnesium; calcium; iron; protein and dietary fiber.
Because of all these traits, broccoli sprouts are truly unique and nutritionally distinct from mature broccoli. Here are nine health benefits that broccoli sprouts can provide.**
Broccoli sprouts support a healthy cardiovascular system*
One study, published in the journal Plant Foods for Human Nutrition, found that broccoli sprouts are extremely efficient at supporting a healthy heart. (4) This study found that diets consisting of even just two percent broccoli sprouts are enough to fully support a healthy cardiovascular system. The antioxidant content in broccoli sprouts can protect the heart against oxidative stress.
Broccoli sprouts help maintain your immune system*
The antioxidant properties of the compounds found in broccoli sprouts can support the immune system by combating oxidative stress. Furthermore, the sulforaphane found in broccoli sprouts can support the body’s natural defenses against seasonal and external threats. (5)
Broccoli sprouts promote healthy brain function*
Studies show that consuming foods rich in sulforaphane, such as broccoli sprouts, promotes healthy cognitive function. (6) Other studies suggest that sulforaphane can also uplift your mood. (7)
Broccoli sprouts support strong and healthy bones*
Sulforaphane can support healthy bones. Studies show that the high sulforaphane content in broccoli sprouts can help maintain strong and healthy bones! (8)
Broccoli sprouts help maintain optimal liver health*
Broccoli sprouts and other sulforaphane-rich vegetables can be part of any healthy diet, especially if you want to promote the general health of your liver. One study published in the World Journal of Gastroenterology found that the sulforaphane in broccoli sprouts supports healthy liver function. (9) Furthermore, regularly consuming broccoli sprouts is known to maintain the healthy number of antioxidants in your liver. (10)
Broccoli sprouts promote a healthy gut and regular bowel movements*
Another study, published in the medical peer-reviewed journal Cancer Research Prevention, found that the sulforaphane in broccoli sprouts helps maintain the normal function of your gastrointestinal tract for a healthy digestive system. Furthermore, the sulforaphane can support your gut’s natural ability to combat external threats. (11) Other studies show that the daily intake of broccoli sprouts can help maintain regular bowel movements. (12)
Broccoli sprouts support the body’s natural elimination of toxic elements*
The body is capable of protecting itself from environmental toxins that it gets exposed to on a daily basis. Broccoli sprouts and sulforaphane can support the natural ability of the body to eliminate toxic elements. (13) Broccoli sprouts can also help maintain healthy levels of antioxidants within the body. (14)
Broccoli sprouts support healthy energy levels and assist in normal post-workout recovery*
Sulforaphane, along with many of the other nutrients found in broccoli sprouts, helps maintain the body’s healthy energy levels. Research published in the Journal of Applied Physiology also showed that broccoli sprouts can support optimal muscle recovery after strenuous exercise. (15)
Broccoli sprouts promote healthy, glowing skin and hair*
Sulforaphane has qualities that can nourish and rejuvenate the skin and hair. The various nutrients in broccoli sprouts make consuming them beneficial for maintaining healthy, glowing skin and hair. (16)
The health benefits that broccoli sprouts can offer hinge on their regular consumption. This means that eating broccoli sprouts in one meal won’t show beneficial effects right away. To experience their health benefits, you should incorporate broccoli sprouts into your daily diet.
However, don’t be so quick to go to the nearest grocery store to grab some broccoli sprouts. The warm, humid conditions that the sprouts require to grow also happen to be the perfect conditions that can allow harmful bacteria to thrive. This means that broccoli sprouts carry a higher risk of foodborne illnesses than fully mature broccoli.
What you can do instead is consume broccoli sprouts supplements, such as Health Ranger Select Organic Broccoli Sprout Powder and Capsules. This premium supplement can help you get the health-promoting nutrients that broccoli sprouts provide, without the risk of bacterial contamination. The capsules can be taken at any time of the day, and the broccoli sprout powder can be added to your favorite smoothies, juices and other drinks. Health Ranger Select Organic Broccoli Sprout Powder and Capsules are vegan, non-GMO, non-China, non-gluten, and certified Kosher and organic. They contain no sweeteners, preservatives or artificial colors or flavors, and they are extensively lab tested for glyphosate, heavy metals and microbiology.
Grow broccoli sprouts in your own home!
Alternatively, you can grow broccoli sprouts right in your own home.
What you need:
- 1 Mason jar with a wide mouth
- 1 sprouting lid (also known as a strainer lid, this is a lid filled with mesh holes big enough to drain water, but small enough to hold in tiny seeds)
- 2-3 Tablespoons of certified organic, non-GMO broccoli sprouting seeds
- Take 2-3 tablespoons of broccoli sprouting seeds in the wide-mouth Mason jar. Use 3 tablespoons if you have a large jar.
- Fill the Mason jar with 2-3 inches of filtered water, enough to cover your broccoli sprouting seeds.
- Cover your Mason jar with the sprouting lid.
- Leave your jar in a warm, dark place for 8-12 hours. Your kitchen cabinets can be perfect for this.
- After 8-12 hours, drain all the liquid and rinse the seeds with more filtered water. Drain all the liquid again.
- After each rinse, rest the Mason jar upside down at an angle. Use a bowl or a specialized sprouting jar holder.
- Place your Mason jar and the holder (either the bowl or the special holder) in a warm, dark place.
- Rinse the sprouts with filtered water every 6-8 hours (2-3 times per day) placing the jar back in its holder after each rinse. After a few days you should see the seeds start to crack open and grow.
- Continue rinsing and keeping the seeds in a warm, dark place until most of the sprouts are around an inch long and have yellow leaves. Once this happens, place the sprouts in indirect sunlight while continuing to rinse them several times each day.
- Once the sprouts turn green, they are ready to eat.
- Twelve hours after the last rinse you can switch to a regular Mason jar lid, or remove them to another airtight container, and store them in the refrigerator for a couple of weeks.
- Enjoy your homegrown broccoli sprouts in salads, soups, stews and smoothies, or on sandwiches!
Do you know of any other science-backed health benefits of broccoli sprouts? How about a different way to grow broccoli sprouts at home? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
Share this article with your friends and tell us how the proven health benefits of broccoli sprouts have impacted your overall health or share your experience with growing broccoli sprouts at home!
**These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to treat, cure or diagnose any diseases.