A Spoonful of Sugar Helps the Broccoli

By Susan Littlefield, April 15, 2011


Former President George H. W. Bush famously remarked, "I do not like broccoli." Perhaps he'd have liked it more if he ate it sprinkled with sugar. While a spoonful of sugar might help the broccoli go down, it turns out it may also help the broccoli itself become more nutritious.

Researchers in China discovered that addling sugar (as surcrose) at low concentrations to the water used to irrigate broccoli sprouts significantly increased the levels of Vitamin C, sulphoraphane, and anthocyanin, the naturally occurring compounds that account for much of the health-promoting properties of broccoli. The researchers concluded that "These results indicate that sucrose treatment could improve the nutritional value of broccoli, and the sprouts growing under adequate concentration of sucrose could benefit our diet by producing more health-promoting compounds."

To read more about this research, go to Science Direct.


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