Whether or not you like the taste of broccoli matters very little, since you can get plenty of nutrients and vitamins by taking dietary supplements. However, for those who do consume the vegetable, eating the whole floret appears to be more beneficial for health than munching on the heads and throwing away the stems.
According to research appearing in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, individuals who skip the broccoli stump absorb two key compounds found in the vegetable at just one-fifth the optimal rate.
Whole broccoli florets contain myrosinase, an enzyme that helps the body break down glucosinolates, which are phytochemicals known for their ability to protect cellular health. However, the majority of the enzyme is contained in the stem of the vegetable, researchers said.
Without myrosinase, the body does not break down glucosinates into sulphoraphane or erusin, two organic substances known for their protective effects on metabolic health.
The team recommended that consumers eat the entire vegetable either lightly cooked or raw. Alternatively, individuals may take herbal supplements made from vegetables and other all-natural ingredients.