Broccoli vs DNA Damage
Researchers are continually digging deep to discover the positive effects that plant chemicals have on the mysterious mechanisms deep within our cellular structure, and are often surprised at the power of humble veggies.
We have all heard how free radicals cause oxidative stress attacks on our DNA, and how this contributes to many disease conditions, especially cancer. And we now know that many veggies protect us from this damage, and even help our DNA repair! But hjow powerfully do they protect us? Do they really make much of a difference? Italian researchers went to find out...
The best way to study DNA damage and repair is by studying smokers - the dastardly compounds they inhale smash the integrity of DNA throughout their body. A group of smokers, for a total of 10 days, were asked to eat 6 times more brocolli than most of us consume - just 1 stalk per day. Over those 10 days, compared to smokers not eating broccoli, those who did suffered about 30% less DNA damage.
The researchers looked at this from multiple angles, and found that the DNA of those people eating broccoli just seems intrinsically more resistant to DNA damage - something about the broccoli was protecting the DNA from the powerful oxidative effects of the smokers nails... And the study concluded that "...the intake of broccoli seems protective, as far as DNA damage is concerned, in smokers who are exposed to oxidative stress." Mutagenesis vol 25 no. 6 pp. 595-602, 2010
Do these results exend to DNA damage cause by other oxidants, like even non-smokers are exposed to? It seems so! And are there other veggies that provide this sort of protection? Yes! Enough to make a real difference? Yes!
Let's join Theo (one of our youngest customers) and exclaim 'Bwoccoli my fwavourite!