Can Broccoli Rebuild Your Brain?

Fresh Green Broccoli

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The Evidence for Broccoli

New research has shown that green vegetables are beneficial for preventing all kinds of health problems—including neurodegenerative conditions—and that one of the best greens to choose is broccoli.

It all seems to have something to do with a compound known as sulforaphane. This chemical is known to increase the production of liver enzymes and clear out toxins which accumulate in body. It’s also notable for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. But sulforaphane also appears to play a role in the development of neural stem cells, according a report released by GreenMed Info.

The report cites a Chinese study published in the Genesis medical journal which appears to show that sulforaphane can have a significant effect on the differentiation and proliferation of stem cells in the brain. The researchers tested doses of sulforaphane from 0.25 µM up to 10 µM to see how neural stem cells would react when they were exposed to the chemical. They discovered that the sulforaphane upregulated the nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2), which helps fight oxidative stress. It also assisted in the expression of proteins in the Wnt pathway, which stimulated the growth and differentiation of neural stem cells.

What does any of that mean in plain English? It means that the sulphorane found in broccoli did indeed help the growth of new neural stem cells, effectively repairing brain tissue.

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