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Cauliflower: The Cancer-Fighting Crucifer

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Cauliflower: The Cancer-Fighting Crucifer

By Cary Neff, Experience Life

Cauliflower is often relegated to the veggies-and-dip tray, but this nutritional powerhouse deserves a place of honor at every dinner table. Raw or roasted, steamed or sautéed, it can be incorporated into delicious dishes that please the palate while promoting vibrant health.

Food Basics
Cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable with a mild, slightly nutty flavor. White cauliflower is the most readily available in grocery stores, but there are also green, orange and purple varieties. Green cauliflower — a cross between cauliflower and broccoli — is slightly sweeter than white cauliflower when raw and tastes more like broccoli when steamed. The orange variety is also slightly sweeter than white cauliflower, and the purple variety has a milder flavor. Purple cauliflower cooks a little faster than its white cousin and turns green when heated. When purchasing, look for firm cauliflower with compact florets. The leaves should be green and crisp.

Nutritional Know-How
Cauliflower contains glucosinolates and thiocyanates — both sulfur-containing phytonutrients — that cleanse the body of damaging free radicals. These phytonutrients encourage the body to ramp up its production of enzymes that aid in detoxification and even kill some tumors and cancer cells. Studies have shown that eating three to five servings of cruciferous vegetables each week can significantly lower the risk of several types of cancer. Researchers believe that, when combined with turmeric, cauliflower may help prevent (or stop the spread of) prostate cancer. Orange cauliflower has slightly higher levels of beta-carotene, and purple cauliflower contains the flavonoid anthocyanin, a powerful antioxidant. A 1-cup serving of boiled cauliflower contains a whopping 91.5 percent of the recommended daily value of vitamin C.

Next: How to eat cauliflower

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Experience Life

Experience Life magazine is an award-winning health and fitness publication that aims to empower people to live their best, most authentic lives, and challenges the conventions of hype, gimmicks and superficiality in favor of a discerning, whole-person perspective. Visit to learn more and to sign up for the Experience Life newsletter, or to subscribe to the print or digital version.


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10:59PM PDT on Mar 17, 2015

Glad to hear this. I love cooked cauliflower.

12:26PM PDT on Mar 17, 2015

Thanks for sharing,

11:55AM PDT on Mar 17, 2015

Glad its agood veggie

7:49PM PST on Jan 8, 2014

Thanks for sharing.

10:20AM PDT on Sep 7, 2012

Thank you for sharing!

10:19AM PDT on Sep 7, 2012

Thank you for sharing!

10:21AM PST on Dec 2, 2011

Great article thankyou...

4:17PM PDT on Apr 17, 2010

Cauliflower, I like it raw or cooked. Yummyyy.....

6:12PM PST on Mar 13, 2010

Call me crazy but I'm 25 and I have NEVER eaten cauliflower before! I've heard of people making "mashed potatoes" using cauliflower. I'll have to try this.Thank you!

2:05AM PST on Mar 9, 2010

Everyone knows that eating the right amount of fruit and vegetables each day can reduce the risk of disease, improve overall health, and rid the body of harmful substances.Cauliflower, a flowering vegetable that is often eaten with other vegetables such as carrots and broccoli, offers phytochemicals that the body needs in order to stay healthy.
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