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Nutritional Guide

A handy, healthy eating guide to find out more about the vitamins and minerals in your vegetables

Common NameLatin NameDescriptionView Range
AsparagusAsparagus officinalis L.Asparagus is one of the richest vegetable sources of vitamin B9 or folate. It also contains [phytoestrogens] (lignans), [saponins] and [phytosterols]. Asparagus is a good source of the soluble [fibre], inulin and other oligofructose polymers. Some people report that asparagus causes their urine to smell; the culprit being asparagusic acid. But do not be put off eating this vegetable, if it is in your urine then it was in your blood and if it's in your blood you know that you have got full benefit of the vitamins and minerals it contains, especially the vitamins B6, B9, A and C.View all asparagus
AubergineSolanum melongena L.The Aubergine or eggplant is a native plant of India and China and although eaten in the UK as a vegetable, is actually a fruit. Like many fruits in order to achieve wide spread dispersal of the seeds it carries it has to advertise the fact by making itself visible against the green foliage - hence the dark purple colour of the skin. There is a general rule that the greater the richness of colour of a fruit or vegetable, the more powerful its potential effect on health. It thus comes as no surprise that it is the purple pigment of the fruit that is of most interest to scientists. Antioxidant Potential - This deep purple skin colour is due to [anthocyanin] pigments with known antioxidant activities. The specific form in aubergine is called nasunin and has been shown to be a potent scavenger of free radicals - powerful [oxidants] and a major cause of age and lifestyle related diseases. Nusumin is also reported to have anti-angiogenesis activity, that is it blocks the development of new blood vessels. The development of a good supply is a characteristic of cancerous (malignant) tissues and thus it has been suggested that nusumin may have anticancer properties. Lowering Cholesterol - The flesh of the aubergine is white due to a lack of pigments and is only a moderate source of vitamins, however there are reports that aubergine extracts can have a significant effect on lowering blood cholesterol. This may be due to their high viscous [fibre] components such as pectin which can trap cholesterol preventing its uptake by the digestive tract - analogous to the way the pectin traps fruits in jam and stops it sinking to the bottom of the jar.View all aubergine
French beansPhaseolus vulgarisFrench beans are a very good source of vitamins A, C, K and folate, [carotenoids] (ß-carotene, zeaxantin and lutein) and dietary fibre. Much of this fibre is due to the fact that most of the carbohydrates in french beans is indigestible, which is great for diabetics as beans do not tend to raise blood sugar levels significantly (i.e. they have a low glycemic index). High Protein Content - However one of its greatest assets is its high protein content, allowing it to substitute for meat as a dietary source. Take care although beans are a good source of vitamins, it does not contain [vitamin B12] and [Vitamin D] found in most meats. Legumes are also as source of [saponins].View all french beans
Bean sproutsVarious speciesAdult plants can get all the raw materials from the soil and atmosphere that they need to grow and prosper. However for a germinating seed this is not the case, it must contain all the nutrients it needs to establish a functional seedling. Rich Source of Nutrients - Consequently most seeds are a rich source of nutrients, but these are often packaged into handy storage compounds - let the seed germinate for a while and all that stored goodness gets converted into vitamins and other nutrients that are needed for growth. Further seeds are often packed full of phytochemicals to protect them from pathogen attach and the environmental stresses of the winter months.View all bean sprouts
BeetrootBeta vulgarisThere is a general principle that the more intense the colour of a vegetable, the more potent the health benefit and you can get no deeper colour than the flesh of the beetroot. Powerful Antioxidants - This colour is due to the presence of the flavonoid ß-cyanin and there has been much speculation as to whether this compound was responsible for the miraculous cancer cures reported in the 1950s. These claims were almost certainly exaggerated, but science has since shown in the test tube and in animals that ß-cyanins are powerful [antioxidants] with potentially significant anticancer properties. Beetroot also contains significant amounts of betaine, a compound that may aid in the metabolism of homocysteine. Homocysteine is a naturally occurring amino acid that can cause damage to blood vessels and so promote cardiovascular disease. Folate - Beetroot is a very good source of folate, a vitamin for which there is strong evidence that it reduces the risk of developing cancer, cardiovascular disease and neural tube defects in unborn children. Finally just a note about the leaves of beetroot - they are as nutritious as spinach, being a rich source of [provitamin A], [vitamin C], [vitamin K], the [B-vitamins], [calcium] and [iron].View all beetroot
BroccoliBrassica oleracea L.There has been so much positive press about the nutritional value of this crop that it is the only brassica crop for which consumption is increasing. Packed with Vitamins & Minerals. However, although in reality it is no better for you than many other brassica varieties, intensive scientific research has shown that like all brassicas it is packed with vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals that may infer some quite impressive benefits to health. Rich Source of Antioxidants - It is a rich source of the antioxidant vitamins [vitamin A], [vitamin C], [vitamin K] and folate and contains [carotenoids] (ß-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin), [flavonoids] (quercetin), [glucosinolates] and [cysteine sulphoxides (methiin) and it is the biochemical activities of many of these compounds that are attributed to the anticancer properties of a brassica-rich diet. Purple sprouting varieties also contain [anthocyanin] to give a near complete set of antioxidant pigments.View all broccoli
Brussels sproutsBrassica oleracea L. var. gemmiferaLike most brassicas, Brussels sprouts are a rich sources of vitamins A, C, K and folate and contain [carotenoids] (ß-carotene and lutein), [flavonoids] (quercetin), [glucosinolates] and [cysteine sulphoxides] (methiin) and it is the biochemical activities of many of these compounds that are attributed to the anticancer properties of a brassica-rich diet. Inhibits Cell Division in Tumours - However the exact composition of these nutriceuticals differs from variety to variety. Brussels sprouts are found to be a very good source of the glucosinolate sinigrin, and compound that breaks down on digestion to for allyl isothicyanate, a compound that can inhibits cell division and stimulates programmed cell death in human tumour cells. How do you maximise the sinigrin concentration in sprout? Simple, just let the frost to get them.View all brussels sprouts
CabbageBrassica oleracea L. var capitataLike all brassicas, green cabbages are a rich sources of vitamins A, C, K and folate and contain [carotenoids] (ß-carotene and lutein), [flavonoids] (quercetin), [glucosinolates] and [cysteine sulphoxides (methiin) and it is the biochemical activities of many of these compounds that are attributed to the anticancer properties of a brassica-rich diet. However the exact composition of these nutriceuticals differs from variety to variety. Anti-cancer Properties - Cabbages are a very good source of the glucosinolate sinigrin, and compound that breaks down on digestion to for allyl isothicyanate, a compound that can inhibits cell division and stimulates programmed cell death in human tumour cells. Powerful Antioxidants - The other major difference between cabbages and many other brassicas is that they are not always green. The red cabbages also contain anthocyanin a powerful antioxidant usually associated with fruit for which may be associated with a decreased risk of developing cardiovascular disease. White cabbage however has very low levels of carotenoids, flavonoids and no anthocyanin.View all cabbage
CapsicumCapsicum annuumCapsicums otherwise known as sweet or bell peppers provide useful amounts of folate and other B vitamins, however, their nutriceutical strength. Cardiovascular Disease - These vitamins may help people with a family history of cardiovascular disease (CVD) since they stimulate the conversion of homocysteine, which tends to be present in high concentration of the blood of such individuals, to cysteine and other beneficial derivatives. The most obvious characteristic of capsicums however is the range of colours present: Eye Diseases - Green peppers are a good source of the photosynthetic associated [carotenoids], lutein and zeaxanthin, both of which may reduce age-related eye diseases, Emphysema and Cancer - Orange peppers are a good source of the [carotinoid ], ß-Carotene or pro-[vitamin A] and ß-Cryptoxanthin, both of which may reduce the risks of developing emphysema and lung cancer. Red peppers are a good source of the [carotinoids], lycopene and ß-Cryptoxanthin. Lycopene may reduce the risk of developing prostate cancer and cancers of the cervix, bladder and pancreas.View all capsicum
CarrotsDaucus carottaAll the text books quote carrots as being an excellent source of the [carotenoid] ß-carotene (provitamin A), but this makes the assumption that all carrots are orange. In fact carrots can come in a range of colours; red due to lycopene, yellow/green due to lutein and purple due to anthocyanin. Effect on Diseases - Like ß-carotene, lutein and lycopene are [carotenoids] whilst anthocyanin is a [flavanoid], but they all have strong [antioxidant] activity which has been associated with reduced risk of developing age and lifestyle related diseases. However, their specific benefit are very different; ß-carotene may guard against lung cancer, lycopene against prostate cancer, lutein against macular degeneration and anthocyanin against cardiovascular disease.View all carrots
CauliflowerBrassica oleracea L. var botrytisLike all brassicas, cauliflower is a rich source of vitamins C, K and folate and contains [glucosinolates] and cysteine sulphoxides (methiin). However, unlike many brassicas it is traditionally not such a good source of [vitamin A], [carotenoids] and [flavonoids]. Why? Because we tend to eat only the colourless developing flower. Reducing Diseases - But now everything is changing with green, orange and red headed varieties available supplying large amounts of phytochemical pigments all of which possess [antioxidant] activity which helps to reduce the risk of developing age-related and lifestyle related diseases.View all cauliflower
CeleryApium graveolensCelery has long been used as a flavouring in the mediterranian, becoming popular in the UK in the nineteenth centuary only after extensive breeding by the Italians had removed the bitterness associated with it's wild relatives. Nutritionally celery doesn't offer much nutritional benefit as it is a poor source of most vitamins and minerals, however the upside is that it is low in calories and a tasty addition to the diet for those of us trying to control our weight. Medically, however the phytochemicals found in celery are arousing much interest. Eliminating Toxins - Celery has been used for centuries as a diuretic. This is due to the high [sodium] and [potassium] levels, the minerals most important for regulating fluid balance, stimulating urine production; thus helping to rid the body of excess fluid and also toxins. Medically diuretics are often prescribed to help lower blood pressure (hypertension), and there is evidence to suggest that celery in the diet can have similar effects, although this is often attributed to a compound called 3-n-butyl pthalide. Pthalides can cause the smooth muscle of the arterial wall to the relax allowing these vessels to dilate and so reduce blood pressure a major cause of cardiovascular disease. On a lighter note, celerys diuretic effect has been used to explain it's reputation as an aphrodisiac. Antioxidant Properties - Celery also contains compounds called Furanocoumarins, known [antioxidants] and so may be useful in cancer protection. In the plant furanocoumarins appear to be synthesised as protection against disease, and there is evidence that they can alter the liver's defensive capabilities in humans and mice. Toxicity - It should be noted however, that large amounts of furanocoumarins can be toxic when exposed to UV-light. However, remember the key to maximising health benefit gained from fruit and vegetables is variety, and there is little chance of problems is if the 5 A DAY guidelines are followed. The best advice to people who are addicted to the taste of celery and consume large amounts is to avoid artificial sources of UV-light such as sunbeds and to cover up or apply UV protection in areas of natural exposure such as found in hot, sunny locations or by spending large amounts of time on snow, ice or water. This is also good general advice as UV-light can by very damaging, being a major cause of skin cancer. Celery contains some [carotenoids], but a pale stem colour indicate low concentrations. Of course the ameteur gardener has the choice of growing non-blanching varieties and not earthing them up, although the results may increase stringiness of the stalk - although it is all good fibre.View all celery
CourgetteCucurbita pepoCourgettes or Zucchini are members of the gourd section of the cucumber family. The fruit are usually picked young to give a firmer flesh, stronger taste and most importantly no seeds. Slow Enlargement of Prostate - However allowing the fruit to produce seeds may have health advantages. The seeds contains chemical substances called cucurbitacins which might help slow enlargement of the prostate gland a major age-related condition in men - see [pumpkin] for more details. If the fruit is picked young then eat the skin to get maximum benefit as it is a good source of [carotenoids] (ß-carotene, zeaxanthin and lutein). Antioxidant Properties - Courgettes are also a good source of the vitamins A, C and folate. There is significant evidence to suggest that sufficient intakes of folate may reduce the risk of contracting cancer, cardiovascular disease and neural tube defects in unborn children. The courgette plant has a repurtion for producing high yields of fruit, so if you start to get a little bored, then why not try eating the flowers? Make sure you cook them first however.View all courgette
CucumberCucumis sativusCucumber is a good source of silicon an essential component of healthy connective tissue (tendons, ligaments, cartilage, and bone). Antioxidant Properties - The dark green skin of cucumber is a good source of [carotenoid] antioxidants. The concentration of many nutrients in cucumber is low due to the large amount of water present in the fruit, however, water is as important to human health as any nutriceutical and the added bonus of vitamin C, silicon, potassium and magnesium makes it as very good way to rehydrate the body.View all cucumber
KaleBrassica oleracea L. var acephalaLike all brassicas kale is a rich sources of vitamins A, C, K and folate and contains [carotenoids] (ß-carotene and lutein), [flavonoids] (quercetin), [glucosinolates] and [cysteine sulphoxides (methiin) and it is the biochemical activities of many of these compounds that are attributed to the anticancer properties of a brassica-rich diet. Anti-cancer Agents - One of the major anticancer agents are the [glucosinolates], with kale having the greatest concentration of all commonly eaten UK brassicas, but then again its dark green leaves have always lets us know that even amongst brassicas this crop is king in the nutritional benefit department.View all kale
LeekAllium porumWhen considering the health benefits of eating members of the allium family it is usually garlic in the spotlight followed by [onion]. But although the health benefits of these are significant, leeks contain a significant advantage over both of them - parts of it are green. Essential Vitamins & Minerals - The green leaves of plants are where the majority of the biochemical reactions needed to sustain life occur and are thus the natural location of many essential vitamins and minerals and explains why leeks are a much better source than onion and garlic for the [B vitamins]. Biochemical reaction also go wrong from time to time and green tissues are packed with protective antioxidants such as the [carotenoids], lutein and zeaxanthin. Antioxidant Properties - In terms of other phytochemicals leek is more like [onion] than garlic having a similar set of [cysteine sulphoxides] (CSOs) although at lower levels which some people may find a more pleasant way to get the benefits of CSOs than eating garlic and [onion]. Leeks are also a (commercial) source of the [flavanol] quercetin, a compound notably absent in garlic, which has been linked to a reduced risk of developing some cancers and cardiovascular disease.View all leek
LettuceLactuca sativaLettuces come in all shapes and sizes and the nutritional value will depend to some extent on the variety. Good Source of Vitamins - Most appear to be good sources of [vitamin A], [vitamin C], [Vitamin K] and [folate] a good cocktail to help you reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer. [Vitamin K] is also important for maintaining bone health and proper clotting of the blood. Antioxidant Properties - Different lettuce varieties may contain different mixtures of phytochemical pigments including the [carotenoids], ß-Carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin; [flavanols] such as quercetin and red [anthocyanins]. All these coloured phytochemicals have strong [antioxidant] activity.View all lettuce
OnionsAllium cepaOnions are regarded as having medicinal properties by many cultures and many scientific studies agree. The nutritional value of onions depends to some extend on their water content with spring (salad) onions tending to have a higher concentration of vitamins and minerals. Even so all onions are a good source of the [B vitamins] and [vitamin C]. Many of the health benefits however can be attributed to two families of phytochemicals; [cysteine sulphoxides] and [flavonoids]. Maximise Health Benefits - [Cysteine sulphoxides] (CSOs) are sulphur-containing compounds that are broken down when eaten to form thiosulphinates, the compounds which are responsible for the pungent flavours so typical of alliums. It is these thiosulphinates that are thought to give alliums many of their health properties. However, cooking onion destroys the enzyme responsible for splitting the CSOs to form the pungent thiosulphinates and consequently a whole baked onion has a very mild flavour, thus to maximise the benefit of cooked onion chop it finally first. The best way to maximise the benefit however is to eat raw onion and the more pungent the better. However, many people find that normal onions, even Spanish onions (often stated to be mild but in fact can be hotter than normal cooking onions) give them heartburn. Fortunately there are now varieties of sweet onion on the market which although reduced in CSO content may allow the consumer to get full benefit of the CSOs present. Decreasing Risk of Heart Disease - [Flavonoids] are coloured compounds which give onion its colour. The yellow tint of many cooking onions is due to the [flavanol] quercetin, a compound which is widely recognised as having several potential benefits to human health including decreasing the risk of heart disease and some forms of cancer. However, the greatest amounts of quercetin is found in red onions, with the yellow pigment being masked by the another [flavonoid], [anthocyanin]. Reducing Risk of Cancer - [Antocyanin] also has potential benefits to human health, and may play a significant role in reducing the risk of developing diseases such as diabetes, cancer and cardiovascular disease. Studies have shown that including onion in the diet is associated with a reduced risk of stomach, colon and brain cancer, Inhibited platelet-mediated thrombosis (a major factor causing heart attacks and strokes), reduced blood levels of cholesterol, triglycerides, and thromboxanes (factors involved in the development of cardiovascular disease) and is associated with a reduction in symptoms associated with osteoporosis. The results of epidemiological studies in human populations suggest that high intakes of Allium vegetables may reduce the risk of developing stomach and bowel cancerView all onions
ParsnipPastinaca sativaThe parsnip is almost an exclusive British vegetable being eaten in very few countries outside the UK. Reducing Risk of Cancer - It is particularly rich in [vitamin C] and [folate] both of which are implicated in reducing the risk of some cancers. Current interest in the potential health benefit of parsnips is focussed on the furanocumarins, antimicrobial compounds concentrated in the skin and giving parsnips their characteristic taste. There is evidence to suggest that furanocumarins may inhibit a family of enzymes called cytochrome P450s, enzymes that function to modify foreign chemicals in the body so that they can be metabolised and excreted. However, sometimes P450s can modify totally harmless chemicals and turn them in to mutagens. Effects on some Prescribed Drugs - This property of furanocumarins however, can have negative effects. Many people are aware of the dangers of eating grapefruit whilst taking some forms of medically prescribed drugs. This effect is due to fumanocumins in the skin of the grapefruit inhibiting P450s, resulting in high levels of the drug building up in the body because it cannot be metabolised and excreted. If you are on prescribed drugs that state you must not eat grapefruit whilst on the course and wish to eat parsnips, then you show consult you doctor first. A second point of caution is that furanocumarins are present in parsnips to protect them and a good job they do. Picking parsnips in strong sunlight with bare hands can lead to painful blistering of the skin.View all parsnip
PeasPisum sativumPeas are a very rich source of [vitamin B1] as well as [vitamin A], [vitamin C] and [vitamin K]. Antioxidant Properties - Vitamin B1 is essential for the generation of energy and the supply of chemical building blocks from the diet, having a vital role is sugar, fat and protein metabolism. [Vitamin A] and [Vitamin C] are powerful antioxidants that neutralise free radicals, reactive compounds form by errors in metabolism and toxins, that are a major factor in the onset of age-related diseases. [Vitamin K] is involved in ensuring proper clotting of the blood and maintaining bone health. Reducing Risk of Macular Degeneration - Peas are of course green and so contain the photosynthesis-protective [carotenoids], lutein and zeaxanthin which are targeted to the eye where that appear to reduce the risk of developing age-related conditions such as macular degeneration.View all peas
PotatoesSolanum tuberosumPotatoes can be healthy providing you don't cook them in fat. They are a good source of vitamins C, B6 and B1. Reducing Risk of Heart Disease & Cancer - [Vitamin C] is the most important water-soluble [antioxidant] in the body and high levels in the blood due to a diet rich in fruit and vegetables (as opposed to [supplementation]) has been linked to a decreased risk of developing cardiovascular disease and cancer. Vitamin B6 is an essential cofactor to a large number of enzymes which have numerous functions from the metabolism of fats and toxins to the synthesis of proteins and neurotransmitters. Source of Energy - Potatoes are also a good source of energy-rich carbohydrate in the form of starch. The [vitamin B1] content of potato allows for efficient utilisation of this energy. Potato, particularly the skin, is also a source of fibre.View all potatoes
PumpkinCucurbita pepoIt is not surprising the orange flesh of the pumpkin if full of ß-Carotene and thus a source of [vitamin A] for the body. The real health benefit however, is not in the watery flesh, but in the seeds. Slow Prostate Gland Enlargement - Pumpkin seeds contain chemical substances called cucurbitacins that can prevent the body from converting the male hormone testosterone into a (5 x) more potent form called dihydrotestosterone (DHT). Dihydrotestosterone is responsible for the development of many male gender characteristics. Accumulation of DHT in the prostate can lead to an enlargement in size due to cell division, a condition called prostatic hyperplasia. This condition is common in men over 50 and by the age of 80, 9 out of 10 men will show symptoms. Cucurbitacins inhibit the formation of DHT from testosterone thus helping to slow enlargement of the prostate gland. Pumpkin seeds are also good source of [zinc] a mineral also used to help reduce prostate size. Cholesterol Lowering Properties - Pumpkin seeds are a rich source of phytosterols. [Phytosterols] are plants fats that have a chemical structure similar to cholesterol, and when present in the diet in sufficient amounts, are believed to fool the body into making less cholesterol and so reducing blood levels of cholesterol. High blood cholesterol is a significant factor in the development of cardiovascular disease.View all pumpkin
View all radishRaphanus sativusRadish is a good source of [vitamin C] and [folate], both of which are always a good start for maintaining a healthy body. Powerful Antioxidant - The red skin also contains [anthocyanin] a powerful [antioxidant] that has been implicated in a decreased risk of developing some forms of cancer and cardiovascular disease. The pungent flavour is due to isothiocyanates formed from [glucosinolates] in the flesh upon eating. These compounds are generating a lot of interest in the scientific community over their potential to prevent, slow or even stimulate programmed cell death of tumours.View all radish
Runner beansPhaseolus coccineusThese legumes are a favourite with many gardeners and like many bean varieties are a very good source of vitamins A, C, K and folate; [carotenoids] (ß-carotene, zeaxanthin and lutein) and dietary fibre. Great for Diabetics - Most of this fibre is due to indigestible carbohydrates which is great for diabetics as beans do not - tend to raise blood sugar levels significantly (i.e. they have a low glycemic index). High Protein ContentBeans are aslo important in the vegetarian diet due to their high protein content, allowing it to substitute for meat as a dietary source. Take care although beans are a good source of many vitamins, but they do not contain [vitamin B12] and [Vitamin D] found in most meats. Legumes are also as source of [saponins].View all runner beans
SpinachSpinacia oleraceaSpinach is an excellent source of vitamin C, folate and ß-carotene and many studies have shown high blood levels of these vitamins due to the consumption of vegetables to be associated with a reduced risk on contracting cardiovascular disease. Anti-cancer Agents - Other studies show that people who eat foods high in vitamin C, ß-carotene, and/or folate are at a much lower risk of developing colon cancer. Spinach also contains a number of [flavonoid] compounds that may function as antioxidants and as anti-cancer agents. Research suggests that spinach may be able to slow the development of stomach and skin cancer. Other studies have showed intake of spinach to be inversely related to incidence of breast cancer. Fights Prostate Cancer - A carotenoid found in spinach and other green leafy vegetables fights human prostate cancer two different ways, according to research published in the September 2004 issue of the Journal of Nutrition. Spinach and other leafy green vegetables are rich in [carotenoids] and one in particular called neoxanthin, appears to induces programmed cell death in prostate cancer cells. Spinach is also a good source of the [carotenoid] lutein and [iron].View all spinach
SwedeBrassica napobrassicaThis root brassica still has many of the nutritional benefits of its green relatives, being high in [Vitamin C], and being a reasonable source of [B Vitamins]. The orange flesh is a source of the [caronenoid], ß-Carotene or [provitamin A]. Like all brassicas swedes contain phytochemical compounds called [glucosinolates], including sinigrin, breakdown products of which can promote programmed cell death of cancer cells. Reduce the Risk of Colon Cancer - Diets rich in brassicas such as swede may thus reduce the risk of developing some forms of cancer such as cancer of the colon.View all swede
TomatoesLycopersicon esculentumThe first phytochemical that comes to mind when you talk tomatoes is the [carotenoid] lycopene and no other compound has undergone so much study in recent times. Protective Against Cancers - Lycopene from tomatoes has been repeatedly studied in humans and found to be protective against a growing list of cancers including bowel, prostate, breast, endometrial, lung, and pancreatic cancers; as well as lower the risk of developing cardiovascular disease. These effects have been attributed to its [antioxidant] activity. Absorption of Lycopene - Interestingly, absorption of lycopene from tomatoes is greater when the fruit has been processed. This is because processes food often contains fat, in which the lycopene can dissolve more readily than water. So to get the maximum out of your tomatoes serve them with an olive oil dressing.View all tomatoes
TurnipsBrassica napaTurnips are a good source of [vitamin C] and phosphorous. Essential Mineral - Phosphorous is an essential mineral which is required for short-term energy storage in the body. It is also an essential component of DNA. The bitter taste of turnips is due to the breakdown products of [glucosinolates] including glucobrassicin, which is converted in to indole-3-carbinol (i3C) and glucoraphanin which is converted into sulforaphane. Reduction in Risk of Some Cancers - There is evidence to suggest that i3C and sulforaphane might reduce the risk of developing some forms of cancer. Turnip also contains the [cysteine sulphoxide] methyl cysteine sulphoxide.View all turnips
WatercressNasturtium officinaleI wonder how many times people have pushed this garnish to the side of the plate without realising how beneficial this "the mustard family of plants, including brassicas" may be to human health. Not only does one serving (80g or 3oz) supply you with your daily requirement of [provitamin A], [vitamin C] and [vitamin K], but are some of the best plant sources of [iron] and [calcium]. Lower the Risk of Lung Cancer - It also has very high levels of other [carotenoids] such as lutein and zeaxanthin, and the flavanol quercetin. And to top it all it is full of [glucosinolates] such as gluconasturtiin which gives watercress its peppery taste. Gluconasturtiin breaks down in the human body to form phenethyl isothiocyanate which research in animal models suggest may lower the risk of developing lung cancer.View all watercress