Too Much Cruciferous

Image Credit: t-dubisme / Flickr

How much cruciferous is too much?

Do you consider 10 cups of cruciferous too much a day? Is there a link between them and inflammation?

walfaro / Originally posted on Overdosing on Greens


According to this study published in the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture, 10 cups a day on a regular basis is probably the limit for raw kale–my second favorite vegetable!

Image Credit: t-dubisme / Flickr


Michael Greger M.D., FACLM

Michael Greger, M.D. FACLM, is a physician, New York Times bestselling author, and internationally recognized professional speaker on a number of important public health issues. Dr. Greger has lectured at the Conference on World Affairs, the National Institutes of Health, and the International Bird Flu Summit, testified before Congress, appeared on The Dr. Oz Show and The Colbert Report, and was invited as an expert witness in defense of Oprah Winfrey at the infamous "meat defamation" trial.

2 responses to “How much cruciferous is too much?

Comment Etiquette

On, you'll find a vibrant community of nutrition enthusiasts, health professionals, and many knowledgeable users seeking to discover the healthiest diet to eat for themselves and their families. As always, our goal is to foster conversations that are insightful, engaging, and most of all, helpful – from the nutrition beginners to the experts in our community.

To do this we need your help, so here are some basic guidelines to get you started.

The Short List

To help maintain and foster a welcoming atmosphere in our comments, please refrain from rude comments, name-calling, and responding to posts that break the rules (see our full Community Guidelines for more details). We will remove any posts in violation of our rules when we see it, which will, unfortunately, include any nicer comments that may have been made in response.

Be respectful and help out our staff and volunteer health supporters by actively not replying to comments that are breaking the rules. Instead, please flag or report them by submitting a ticket to our help desk. is made up of an incredible staff and many dedicated volunteers that work hard to ensure that the comments section runs smoothly and we spend a great deal of time reading comments from our community members.

Have a correction or suggestion for video or blog? Please contact us to let us know. Submitting a correction this way will result in a quicker fix than commenting on a thread with a suggestion or correction.

View the Full Community Guidelines

  1. It appears that kale has reached superstar status within the last couple of years and rightly so. However, there are other members of the cruciferous (cabbage) family that also pack a nutritional punch (e.g., Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, and bok choy). However, it is interesting to observe that many Americans tend to go overboard on something that is touted as being a “superfood”, so we figure if a little is good then more must better. Cruciferous vegetables contain sulfur compounds called glucosinolates. These compounds have been shown to be powerful disease fight phytonutrients (plant nutrients), reduce inflammation, and help the liver to detoxify harmful substance 1. Nevertheless, too much of a good thing may be harmful when it comes to cruciferous vegetables. In excessive amounts these compounds have been shown to be toxic. One study found that a woman eating 2.2-3.3 pounds/15 cups (1.0-1.5kg) of raw bok choy daily for several weeks went into a hypothyroid coma 2.

    From the study I cited above I would advise caution against consuming 10 cups of raw cruciferous vegetables daily. 10 cups is equivalent to about 5 pounds. A much healthier dietary approach would be to switch up your greens and consume a wide variety of colorful vegetables. Checkout Dr. Greger’s video on Overdosing on Greens for more information on this topic:


  2. Cruciferous vegetables have indole-3-carabinol, which can cause the liver to increase production of the enzyme angiotensinogen, which constricts blood vessels, raising blood pressure very acutely in sensitive people…possibly accounting for hypertension of unknown cause. The cancer-prevention part is nice, though!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This