- Excellent source of Vitamin K, Vitamin C, Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), folate, Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid) and molybdenum.
- Very good source of tryptophan, potassium, phosphorus, manganese, Vitamin B1 (thiamin), Vitamin B2 (riboflavin) and biotin.
- Good source of magnesium, copper, protein, Vitamin B3 (niacin) and zinc.
- There are only 25 calories in a one cup serving of cauliflower.
- Treats bleeding gums, kidney and bladder disorders, high blood pressure and constipation.
- Helps purify the blood.
Cauliflower is rich in antioxidants, known for preventing cancer and heart disease caused by oxidative damage to blood vessels. Other anticancer molecules found in the vegetable include the phytochemicals sulforaphane and indole-3-carbinol.
Cauliflower also contains the compounds glucosinnolates and thiocyanates, which increase the liver's ability to neutralize potentially toxic substances. If not neutralized, these toxic molecules can damage cell membranes and molecules within the cell nucleus. This may eventually lead to cell deregulation and uncontrolled growth (carcinogenesis).
Cauliflower is an excellent source of Vitamin C, a well known and extremely effective antioxidant. It is also an excellent source of folate, vital for the maturation of red blood cells. Folate deficiency results in anemia. Folate can reduce the risk of neural tube defects by fifty percent when women planning to, or are already pregnant, have a diet of folate-rich foods.
History of Cauliflower
The ancestry of the cauliflower can be traced back to the wild cabbage, a plant thought to have originated in Asia Minor. It underwent many transformations and finally reappeared and was introduced in the Mediterranean region and regions of Eastern Europe by the Etruscans, who came from Turkey.
The cauliflower was once described as resembling a bridal bouquet. The Romans did grow cauliflower, but little is known about how they prepared it. It has been an important vegetable in Turkey and Italy since at least 600 BC. It is recorded that it was actually the Italians who first adopted this vegetable for everyday cooking.
When Catherine de Medici of Tuscany wed Henry II of France, she took many cooks from Italy with her. The introduction of this vegetable into France made it very popular during the late 15th through to the mid 16th Centuries. Subsequently, it was then cultivated in Northern Europe and the British Isles.
Significant amounts of cauliflower are produced today in the United States, Italy, China, France and India.