Keeping healthy involves eating a balanced diet and taking plenty of exercise. Our diets include fruit and vegetables, as lots of studies have suggested that eating plenty of fruit and vegetables helps to keep us healthy. There are many reasons why fruit and veg may keep us healthy – they are high in fibre, minerals and vitamins, but low in calories. We also think that many of the natural chemical compounds they contain, which give them their distinctive flavours, aromas and colours, may also help our bodies to stay healthy.
Broccoli contains one of these natural compounds, called glucoraphanin. Beneforte is even more of a good thing as it contains 2-3 times more glucoraphanin than other broccoli varieties.
Broccoli is one of a group of vegetables called crucifers. Cruciferous vegetables are good at switching on our own defences and there is a body of scientific evidence that diets high in these vegetables help to reduce risk of cancer and maybe also heart disease.
Most of the evidence that broccoli and other crucifers keep us healthy comes from large studies of people’s diets, some of which have looked at hundreds of thousands of people. Many of these studies suggest that people who eat several portions of these vegetables every week have a lower risk of cancer and a lower risk of heart disease.
We think this is because these vegetables contain compounds known as glucosinolates. The dietary studies suggest that having regular intake of the glucosinolates contained in crucifers may help our bodies to keep functioning well, especially as we get older. When we eat glucosinolates they are converted into chemicals known as isothiocyanates.
Glucoraphanin is the very special glucosinolate in broccoli, which is found at even higher levels in Beneforte. In our digestive system, this is converted to an isothiocyanate called sulphoraphane. Sulphoraphane enters our bodies’ cells and switches on our ‘antioxidant’ genes. These genes are part of our natural defence system which helps to protect us from environmental toxins but are also important in ensuring that we can combat a wide range of common diseases and keep us healthy as we get older.
A healthy metabolism is important to maintaining health, and glucoraphanin in broccoli can help to ‘re-tune’ the metabolism, through activating our bodies natural defences that help ensure our metabolic machinery functions well.
This may help to protect against chronic diseases such as obesity, Type II diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and some forms of cancer.
How much broccoli or glucoraphanin we need to eat to help us to keep healthy? We can’t say for sure because the levels of glucoraphanin in ordinary broccoli can vary, and sometimes broccoli can have very little. We have developed Beneforte broccoli to have a very stable, rich and reliable level of glucoraphanin to ensure that you will get your dose of glucoraphanin.