Do you want to boost your daily calcium intake? Cow milk and dairy aren’t the only options. Contrary, there are many no dairy foods rich in calcium. In fact, there are many reasons to skip cow’s milk. But, does broccoli have calcium?
Nutrition facts of broccoli
Broccoli is known to be a super-healthy food. For good reason…
According to the USDA, broccoli contains many vitamins and minerals.
|Amount (per 100 gr)||% DV (Daily Value)|
|Calcium, Ca||47 mg||5%|
|Iron, Fe||0.73 mg||9%|
|Magnesium, Mg||21 mg||7%|
|Phosphorus, P||66 mg||9%|
|Potassium, K||316 mg||2%|
|Sodium, Na||33 mg|
|Zinc, Zn||0.41 mg||5%|
|Copper, Cu||0.049 mg||5%|
|Selenium, Se||2.5 mcg||4%|
|Vitamin C||89.2 mg||118%|
|Vitamin B6||0.175 mg||13%|
|Vitamin A, RAE||31 mcg||4%|
|Carotene, beta||361 mcg|
|Carotene, alpha||25 mcg|
|Cryptoxanthin, beta||1 mcg|
|Lutein + zeaxanthin||1403 mcg|
|Vitamin E||0.78 mg||5%|
|Vitamin K||101.6 mcg||112%|
Does broccoli have calcium?
The recommended daily intake of calcium is about 1000-1300 mg. More here.
Indeed, broccoli has calcium. It has moderate amounts of calcium though…
For instance, a cup of broccoli (about 100 gr) contains 47 mg of calcium. That’s only 5% of DV. Considering that we can eat more than 100 grams, broccoli can add a significant amount of calcium in our daily needs.
Broccoli is a superfood. Maybe it isn’t the richest food in calcium, but it contains so many micronutrients and health-promoting phytochemicals that you should eat it regularly.
Other greens rich in calcium
There are many other vegetables that contain a great amount of calcium.
To mention a few, kale (254 mg), arugula (160 mg), spinach (100 mg), and beet greens (117 mg) are extremely rich in calcium. They all contain more than 100 mg of calcium per 100 grams of the food.
If you have a history of kidney stones, better avoid excess consumption of spinach. Why?
Because it’s high in oxalates. Oxalates bind to calcium creating calcium oxalate stones. This is another name for kidney stones.
You can learn more about the importance of calcium and how to increase calcium absorption, here.
Health benefits of broccoli
Broccoli does have calcium but this isn’t the main reason you should eat it.
It’s much more…
100 grams of broccoli has only 34 calories.
Moreover, it’s mainly water. About 90% of broccoli is actually water.
Broccoli for people with diabetes
Broccoli has a very low glycemic index. This means that it wouldn’t spike your blood sugar. Broccoli has a very low glycemic load as well.
The reason for this is that broccoli is low in carbs and high in fibers.
It’s the perfect food for people with diabetes.
Broccoli for weight loss
Furthermore, broccoli is an ideal meal if you want to lose some extra weight.
Firstly, It’s low in calories.
Secondly, it has many fibers. Fibers can keep you full for more time.
Additionally, researchers have found that increased fiber intake in obese people can significantly help with weight loss.
Additionally, broccoli contains so many nutrients that can help your body’s functions.
Don’t forget…broccoli is super rich in vitamin C. Just a small cup of 100 gr of broccoli can easily cover your vitamin C daily needs. It contains about 90 mg of vitamin C.
Studies have shown that increased vitamin C intake means less body fat… That’s amazing.
How does it work? Scientists found that when we have adequate amounts of vitamin C, we can mobilize more fat into energy, during moderate exercise. Up to 30%. That’s huge.
That’s the reason, why some people can’t lose weight, no matter how few calories they eat. They don’t consume important phytonutrients, such as vitamin C. Consequently their bodies lose the ability to function properly.
Other health benefits of broccoli
Broccoli is truly a powerhouse. It’s among the healthiest food you can eat.
Broccoli is a good source of chlorophyll
Broccoli is rich in chlorophyll. It has 1.4 mg of chlorophyll per gram. It contains even more chlorophyll than spinach. Chlorophyll has linked to decreased risk of cancer, detoxification of the body, boosting immune system, and healthy skin.
Vitamin K for healthy bones and heart
Furthermore, broccoli is a good source of vitamin K. A pant-based diet is rich in vitamin K. Moreover, vitamin K can reduce the risk of fractures, protect bone mass, prevent some types of cancer, and help the cardiovascular system.
Health benefits of fiber in broccoli
We need about 30 gr of fiber daily.
Broccoli contains a great amount of fiber. Just a small cup of 100 gr contains more than 2.5 gr of fiber. It’s about 9% DV.
Unfortunately, both children and adults consume less than half of the recommended fiber intake.
That’s a shame, as an increased fiber intake was linked to a significantly lower risk for developing many diseases, such as:
- coronary heart disease, stroke,
- obesity, and
- certain gastrointestinal diseases.
Moreover, if we eat more fiber, it means lower blood pressure and lower cholesterol levels. Additionally, more fiber means improved insulin sensitivity. Even to people with diabetes.
Fiber is necessary for good health.
The easiest way to increase your daily fiber intake is through smoothies.
How to cook broccoli to preserve calcium & nutrients
You can enjoy broccoli both raw and cooked. All you want is to preserve the nutrients.
Raw Broccoli for a calcium boosting smoothie
You can eat raw broccoli, using it in smoothies. Green smoothies are easy to be made. You only need a full fridge.
Frozen bananas, some broccoli, and a few seasonal sweat fruits are all the ingredients you need.
If you need an extra amount of calcium daily (postmenopausal women, teenagers, and pregnant women need extra calcium) you’ll benefit from a calcium-rich smoothie.
Moreover, you can add some seeds. Chia seeds (631 mg), sesame seeds (131 mg), and flaxseeds (255 mg) are especially rich in calcium. They contain more than 100 mg of calcium per 100 gr of product.
How to cook broccoli to preserve nutrients
You can enjoy cooked broccoli many times a week. It’s perfect in salads, as a side dish, as the main meal, or as part of a pasta recipe.
In any way you enjoy broccoli, just don’t overcook it. We want to keep all of its health-promoting nutrients intact. Many of them, such as vitamin C, are very vulnerable to heat. Also, they are water-soluble.
For these reasons, it’s better to steam broccoli, than boil it. You want to preserve all the healthy nutrients.
Unfortunately, if you boil broccoli, most of the nutrients will be leached into the water.
Steaming for a few minutes won’t harm them.
As a rule of thumb, steam broccoli until you can put a fork easily into the stem.
- NCBI: Health benefits of dietary fiber.