Transcript: Raw vs. Cooked Broccoli
Are nuts healthier raw or roasted though? And what happens to all the good things in vegetables when you cook them? Well, a tell-all paper was published earlier this year, you tell me: Which is healthier, raw broccoli or fried broccoli? Thought I’d start out with an easy one. How many say raw broccoli? How many dare to say fried?
Indeed, you get over six times more nutrition in fresh, measured in total glucosinolate content—the cancer fighting cruciferous compounds So just throw your feet up and kick back and enjoy.
Steamed versus boiled, each for 2 minutes. Who says steamed is healthier? Boiled? Interestingly, though, it’s not the heat. Steam is actually hotter than boiling water, but just like much of the nutrition in dark green leafy leaves of green tea leaches into the water, the nutrition in boiled greens doesn’t disappear, it’s just transferred to the cooking water, so as long as you’re making dairy-free cream of broccoli soup or something, feel free to boil away, just don’t boil and throw away the liquid.
Let’s kick it up a notch: Raw, steamed, or microwaved? Which is healthier, based on the amount of cancer-fighting nutrients absorbed into your body? How many say raw is healthiest? Steamed? Nuked? If you’d been keeping track of these numbers you’d know… Starts out neck to neck but then steamed takes the lead!
Wait a second, how can something gain nutrition when you cook it? How can something gain nutrition when you eat it? Because it’s not what you eat, it’s what you absorb. And cooking can boost the absorption of many important plant nutrients. So while even light steaming can partially destroy some nutrients, the absorption of the remaining fraction is so boosted that it may be even healthier than raw, based on the latest research.
But you can overdo it. Look at the microwaving. Microwaving destroys more nutrients than steaming, but has that same absorption boosting effect so you’re right up here where you started. Microwave 5 minutes, however, and you really do see a detrimental impact on nutritional quality.
To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Dianne Moore.
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