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Benefits of Cruciferous Veggies on Keto

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  Published on July 2nd, 2020
  Reading time: 4 minutes
  Last modified August 10th, 2021
veggies on keto

The crunchy, the sulfur-rich, and the savory…cruciferous veggies pack a powerful nutritious punch and a whole lot of comforting flavor. Using these nutrient-dense veggies creates hearty, flavorful keto dishes. So, what exactly are cruciferous veggies on keto?

What are the Cruciferous Vegetables?

Cruciferous veggies are a large and diverse group of plants that yield numerous health benefits. Each of these plants brings strong and unique flavors.

Since the blossoms of cruciferous veggies resemble a cross, they’re named after the Latin word for crucifix. Cruciferous vegetables are widely known for their cancer-fighting properties.
The cruciferous group of plants includes:

  • Bok choy
  • Cabbage
  • Brussel sprouts
  • Turnips
  • Cauliflower
  • Kale
  • Radish
  • Arugula
  • Broccoli
keto 2.0 vegetables

What are the Benefits of Cruciferous Vegetables?

In addition to helping with cancer, cruciferous veggies are rich in vitamins E, C, and K, folate, and fiber.  The fiber keeps you fuller for longer.

Glucosinolates are the chemicals or sulfur-containing compounds responsible for the aroma and the slightly bitter or spicy flavor of these plants. These chemicals have also been shown to have anti-cancer effects [1,2].

Cruciferous veggies don’t just have anti-cancer and cardiovascular benefits, they’re also excellent sources of nutrients and phytochemicals that promote general health and wellness [3,4,5,6,7].

To get the most health benefits, you should try incorporating cruciferous veggies into your keto diet frequently [8]. Cruciferous veggies like broccoli and Brussel sprouts are a great low-carb choice for the keto diet since they have lots of fiber and nutrients without all the carbs!

Incorporate Cruciferous Veggies into Your Keto Diet!

Get creative with your cruciferous veg! Here are some of our top keto recipes with cruciferous vegetables as the star!

brussels sprouts

1) Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts are one of the top veggies to have on keto! They are packed full of nutrients like vitamin C, ALA (an omega-3 fatty acid), antioxidants, and fiber!

Brussels sprouts can be kind of bland, though, but bacon certainly brings a whole lot of flavor! Check out this tasty keto dish that highlights a mouthwatering merging of bacon and Brussels!

2) Broccoli

Broccoli is right in fiber, which a lot of people who first go keto lack! If you find yourself having GI issues on keto, try adding more broccoli into your diet!

Don’t know how to incorporate more broccoli into your diet? How about this creative broccoli cheese stick bread or these keto crunchy broccoli blossoms!

arugala

3) Arugula

Arugala is another one of those nutrient-packed veggies to have on keto! It is full of calcium, potassium, folate, vitamin C, and vitamin K.

Arugula makes the perfect zesty base for any salad, like this keto fennel arugula salad with a drizzle of lemon vinaigrette.

4) Kale

Kale is often described as a superfood because it is packed full of so many nutrients! Kale contains plenty of vitamin K, C, antioxidants, and fiber!

Blend some kale into a refreshing green smoothie or try this warming cheesy creamed kale dish!

kale veggies on keto
cauliflower

5) Cauliflower

In a world where you can be anything, be like cauliflower! Cauliflower is not only packed full of micronutrients, but it can be made into so many dishes (from pizza to pasta)!

Cauliflower is a versatile keto favorite that can be used to make cauli bread, gnocci, and mac and cheese! This appetizing veggie can also be used as a pizza crust, blended into tasty rice, or whatever else you can come up with!

How Do You Like Your Cruciferous Veggies on Keto?

From cauliflower pizza to broccoli salad and beyond, what are your favorite ways to eat cruciferous veggies on keto? 

 

References

1) National Cancer Institute. Cruciferous Vegetables and Cancer Prevention. https://www.cancer.gov/about-cancer/causes-prevention/risk/diet/cruciferous-vegetables-fact-sheet

2)  Jain, M. G, Hislop, G. T., Howe, G. R., & Ghadirian, P. (1999). Plant foods, antioxidants, and prostate cancer risk: findings from case-control studies in Canada. Nutrition and Cancer, 34(2), 173-184. doi: 10.1207/S15327914NC3402_8.

3)  Oregon State University (2005). Cruciferous Vegetables. https://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/food-beverages/cruciferous-vegetables

4)  Liu, R. H. (2004). Potential syngergy of phytochemicals in cancer prevention: Mechanism of action. Journal of Nutrition, 134(12), 3479S-3485S. doi: 10.1093/jn/134.12.3479S.

5)  Bai, Y., Wang, X., Zhao, S., Ma, C., Cui, J., & Zheng, Y. (2015). Sulforaphane protects against cardiovascular disease via Nrf2 activation. Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity, doi: 10.1155/2015/407580.

5)  Higdon, J. V., Delage, B., Williams, D. E., & Dashwood, R. H. (2007). Cruciferous vegetables and human cancer risk: epidemiologic evidence and mechanistic basis. Pharmacological Research, 55(3), 224-236. doi: 10.1016/j.phrs.2007.01.009.

6)  Zhang, X., Shu, X., Xiang, Y., Yang, G., Li, H., Gao, J., Cai, H., Gao, Y., & Zheng, W. (2011). Cruciferous vegetables consumption is associated with a reduced risk of total and cardiovascular disease mortality. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 94(1), 240-246. DOI: 10.3945/ajcn.110.009340

7)  Wang, X., Ouyang, Y., Liu, J., Zhu, M., Zhao, G., Bao, W., & Hu, F. B. (2014). Fruit and vegetable consumption and mortality from all causes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer: a systematic review and dose-response meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies. BMJ, DOI: 10.1136/bmj.g4490

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