I have dissected a few bodies in my time but could never face a close-up of the inside of a human skull. Perhaps this hesitation explains why I have never had a taste for cauliflower which looks like an albino version of a brain wrapped prettily in a base of green leaves.
However, once I understood the super-charged powers of this remarkable cruciferous veggie – I embraced it – along with the numerous creative ways one can serve it up.
Cauliflower, like the other cruciferous vegetables – kale, broccoli, collard and brussel sprouts – contains phytonutrients. Phytonutrients are natural chemicals found in plants which are not necessary to live like vitamins or minerals but which can boost immunity and aid the body in a number of ways.
The phytonutrients in cauliflower (as well as its high fiber, low fat and high vitamin C content) promote detoxification and reduce inflammation in the body. Because eliminating free radicals and cleaning the body is very important in preventing disease as well as aging, eating a cup of cauliflower daily has been shown to reduce the chances of cancer. One study showed smokers have an almost 70% reduction in getting lung cancer if they regularly consume cruciferous vegetables.
Because of its ability to reduce inflammation in the body, cauliflower is noted for reducing puffiness under eyes.
Detoxification and reduced inflammation are important for maintaining firm, healthy skin and slowing aging so there are many benefits to including cauliflower in your diet. If you are not into white cauliflower, go for the orange (25x more vitamin A than white), green (has everything in white + the chlorophyll of broccoli) or purple (has high levels of anthocyanins an antioxidant found in red wine and red cabbage) versions which have even greater powers to prevent aging and disease.
But how do you eat cauliflower? I looked at a million recipes online and the 2 easiest (and most palatable) are:
- Cook (steam, boil) and mash like potatoes. Add chives, salt, fresh pepper and olive oil.
- Mix olive oil, sesame seeds, nutritional yeast and curcumin and drop florets of cauliflower in. Make sure they are well coated with the mixture and then roast. Even my 20 month old baby loves these!