Cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable that is naturally high in fiber and B-vitamins. It provides antioxidants and phytonutrients that can protect against cancer. It also contains fiber to enhance weight loss and digestion, choline that is essential for learning and memory, and many other important nutrients.
1. Contains Many Nutrients
The nutrition profile of cauliflower is quite impressive.
Cauliflower is very low in calories yet high in vitamins. In fact, cauliflower contains some of almost every vitamin and mineral that you need.
Here is an overview of the nutrients found in 1 cup, or 128 grams, of raw cauliflower:
- Calories: 25
- Fiber: 3 grams
- Vitamin C: 77% of the RDI
- Vitamin K: 20% of the RDI
- Vitamin B6: 11% of the RDI
- Folate: 14% of the RDI
- Pantothenic acid: 7% of the RDI
- Potassium: 9% of the RDI
- Manganese: 8% of the RDI
- Magnesium: 4% of the RDI
- Phosphorus: 4% of the RDI
2. High in Fiber
Cauliflower is quite high in fiber, which is beneficial for overall health.
There are 3 grams of fiber in one cup of cauliflower, which is 10% of your daily needs.
Fiber is important because it feeds the healthy bacteria in your gut that help reduce inflammation and promote digestive health.
Consuming enough fiber may help prevent digestive conditions like constipation, diverticulitis and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
Moreover, studies show that a diet high in fiber-rich vegetables like cauliflower is linked with a lower risk of several illnesses, including heart disease, cancer and diabetes.
Fiber may also play a role in obesity prevention, due to its ability to promote fullness and reduce overall calorie intake.
3. Good Source of Antioxidants
Cauliflower is a great source of antioxidants, which protect your cells from harmful free radicals and inflammation.
Similar to other cruciferous vegetables, cauliflower is particularly high in glucosinolates and isothiocyanates, two groups of antioxidants that have been shown to slow the growth of cancer cells.
In test-tube studies, glucosinolates and isothiocyanates have been shown to be especially protective against colon, lung, breast and prostate cancer.
Cauliflower contains carotenoid and flavonoid antioxidants as well, which have anti-cancer effects and may reduce the risk of several other illnesses, including heart disease.
What’s more, cauliflower contains high amounts of vitamin C, which acts as an antioxidant. It is well-known for its anti-inflammatory effects that may boost immune health and reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer.
4. May Aid in Weight Loss
Cauliflower has several properties that may help with weight loss.
First, it is low in calories with only 25 calories per cup, so you can eat a lot of it without gaining weight.
It can also serve as a low-calorie substitute for high-calorie foods, such as rice and flour.
As a good source of fiber, cauliflower slows digestion and promotes feelings of fullness. This may automatically reduce the number of calories you eat throughout the day, an important factor in weight control.
High water content is another weight loss friendly aspect of cauliflower. In fact, 92% of its weight is made up of water. Consuming lots of water-dense, low-calorie foods is associated with weight loss.