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Top Five Cruciferous Vegetables

A recent study out of Georgetown University Medical Center and reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences examines whether there are property compounds in cruciferous vegetables that may protect against the effects of radiation. Cruciferous vegetables are in the cabbage family of vegetables. This could prove important for those undergoing radiation for cancer treatments. More specifically, they isolated diindolylmethane (DIM), “compound metabolized from indole-3-carbinol which occurs in cruciferous vegetables.”

Researchers tested “lethal” doses of gamma radiation into lab rats and broke them into groups that received DIM injections following radiation against a control group that didn’t. The group of rats that received the DIM injections lived a much longer time than those that did not receive it. After reviewing these results, researchers concluded “DIM could protect normal tissues in patients receiving radiation therapy for cancer, but could also protect individuals from the lethal consequences of a nuclear disaster.”

The protective effects of DIM on radiation exposure still need to be further studied, but many scientists have believed for some time now that it does have health benefits against cancer. In addition, the cruciferous vegetables hosting DIM offer a wealth of other health benefits. My top five cruciferous vegetables are:

  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Cabbage
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Kale