Tuesday, March 13, 2012

The Vegetable Of The Week - Brussel Sprouts

Vegetable Information: 
Forerunners to modern Brussels sprouts were likely cultivated in ancient Rome. Brussels sprouts as we now know them were grown possibly as early as the 13th century in what is now Belgium. The first written reference dates to 1587. During the 16th century, they enjoyed a popularity in the southern Netherlands that eventually spread throughout the cooler parts of Northern Europe. Production of Brussels sprouts in the United States began in the 18th century, when French settlers brought them to Louisiana. Thomas Jefferson grew them at Monticello. The first plantings in California's Central Coast began in the 1920s, with significant production beginning in the 1940s. - History Of Brussel Sprouts 

Health Benefits: 
Brussel Sprouts contains Diindolylmethane aka DIM. 
When estrogen is broken down in your body, it can either form beneficial or harmful estrogen metabolites, and DIM helps your body to break down estrogen into the beneficial type. The beneficial estrogen metabolites have antioxidant properties and help to protect the heart and brain from free-radical damage. Diindolylmethane also simultaneously reduces the levels of harmful estrogen metabolites, which is beneficial because they are associated with an increased risk for obesity, breast cancer and uterine cancer. Additional problems associated with too many harmful estrogen metabolites include moodiness and breast pain in women and loss of sex drive in men. - Michael Zeligs, Scott Connelly 

DIM has been found to help prevent and treat breast and prostate cancers. Studies done on animals also found DIM to prevent the replication and spreading of cancer cells. Exactly how DIM helps to prevent and treat cancer is unknown; however, DIM inhibits angiogenesis, which is the formation of new blood vessels. Tumors require the growth of new blood vessels to supply the nourishment that is necessary for tumors to thrive. By preventing the growth of new blood vessels, DIM may therefore help to abolish tumors. Unfortunately, only a few small studies have been done on DIM so far, and more research needs to be done to confirm the usefulness of DIM as an anticancer supplement. - Live Strong 

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