Broccoli is a cruciferous edible vegetable in the cabbage family. It’s a low carb veggie a 1 cup (76grams) containing approximately 4.78 grams carbohydrates. Broccoli is rich in dietary fiber, which is good for digestive health. Additionally, this veggie is loaded with lots of minerals, vitamins, carotenoids, tocopherols, and tocotrienols which all play an important role in maintaining overall body health. (Source)
It’s important to note that the amounts of carbs and calories in broccoli highly depends on serving size and preparation methods. Let’s see if Broccoli is a keto-friendly vegetable.
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How Many Carbs in Broccoli?
As earlier indicated, carbs and calorie concentration will highly vary depending on the serving sizes. However, the veggies in the cabbage family are generally low-carbs, and broccoli is no exception.
A cup of chopped broccoli (76g) contains around 68.4 grams of water. The total carbohydrate content in the same serving size is 4.78grams.
Net carbs in Broccoli is calculated as follows:
Total carbs minus insoluble fiber =net carbs
In this case,
4.78-1.82= 2.96 grams
|The portion (serving size)||Amount of Carbs|
|1 cup (76 grams||4.78|
Broccoli contains two types of carbohydrates, which are sugars and fiber. Because fibers are indigestible, they won’t contribute to your overall daily carb intake. They help in enhancing digestive health. The sugars in broccoli include fructose, glucose, and sucrose. These are simple sugars, and because their concentration in broccoli is minimal, they won’t contribute to overall blood glucose fluctuations.
How Many Calories are in Broccoli?
Broccoli is low in carbs, fats, and proteins resulting in lesser calories. A cup of 76 grams raw broccoli contains 24 calories. And because of the low-calorie content, broccoli is considered a valuable addition in any weight loss diet menu.
Can You Eat Broccoli on the Keto Diet
Yes, you can eat broccoli on the keto diet. It’s one of the many and most recommended low carbohydrates veggies for a ketogenic diet. You can eat large, serving daily without worrying about getting kicked out of ketosis. Additionally, this keto-friendly veggie is loaded with antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, which are hard to find on a keto diet.
However, you should keep tabs on your carb intake when adding broccoli to your keto meal plan. It’s very easy to go overboard even with low carb veggie and fruits like cucumbers and strawberries if you don’t calculate your macros. It’s important to keep track of your nutrients intake.
Broccoli Nutritional Facts
The USDA.GOV provides the following nutrients information for 1 cup of 71g raw sliced broccoli. It’s is considered one of the best foods in terms of nutrients density (Source)
- Fat 0.3g
- Calories 31
- Carbs 6g
- Sodium 30mg
- Protein 2.5g
- Sugars 1.5g
- Fiber 2.6g
A cup of raw broccoli will give you above your daily requirements for vitamin K and vitamin C. Additionally, broccoli is one of the best sources of folate with a cup serving to provide you with 14% of your daily value (DV). Foliate is an important nutrient during pregnancy.
Other important nutrients in broccoli include potassium (8% DV), manganese (10% DV), and vitamin A and B6 11% DV and 8%DV, respectively. This keto-friendly vegetable is also loaded with almost all other vitamins and minerals but in very minute amounts.
Additionally, a cup of raw chopped broccoli gives 9% daily value of dietary fiber, which is excellent for digestive health.
Health Benefits of Eating Broccoli
Adding broccoli in your weekly keto diet meal plan not only helps you in your overall weight loss journey but also comes with other health benefits. Several studies support the fact that broccoli can help in disease prevention and boosting your overall body health.
Diabetes and Autism
For people with type 2 diabetes, broccoli extracts may be what you need to stay healthy. Sulforaphane in broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables like Brussels sprouts and cabbage could inhibit the activity or expression of the different genes associated with type 2 diabetes.
Scientists gave the extract to 97 people with type 2 diabetes in three months. While non-obese participants in the research never saw any effects, the obese saw the glucose levels decrease by 10% compared with the control group. However the doses administered to these individuals is 100 times that found naturally in broccoli.
Additionally, sulforaphane was also found to relieve symptoms related to autism. Participants who took this extract showed significant improvement in social interactions and verbal communications. (Source)
Broccoli may be what your doctor ordered for osteoarthritis treatment. It’s also an excellent anti-inflammatory remedy which can significantly reduce joint damages associated with osteoarthritis.
According to a 2013 research by University of East Anglia, broccoli’s sulforaphane can help relieve arthritis symptoms. This chemical compound blocks the enzymes responsible for joint destruction by stopping the main molecule that causes inflammation.
Additionally, broccoli is rich in omega-3 fatty acids and isothiocyanates that help regulate inflammation. A 2010 study suggested that flavonoid kaempferol found in broccoli help reduce the impacts of allergens in the intestinal tract, which can prevent chronic inflammation.
Many of the keto-friendly vegetables and fruits have anti-cancer benefits. Eating cruciferous vegetables has been linked with lower risks of cancer particularly colon and lung cancer. This can be attributed to sulforaphane, a chemical extract containing sulfur, which gives cruciferous veggies their bitter taste.
Studies have found out that this chemical compound can hinder the enzyme histone deacetylast (HDAC) known to facilitate the growth of cancer cells.
Additionally, broccoli contains an important vitamin (folate), which has been shown to decrease the risk of breast cancer. Sufficient amounts of this vitamin have also shown to help prevent against stomach, colon, cervical and pancreatic cancers. (Source) While the mechanism behind cancer protection isn’t fully understood, scientists believe that it may be something to do with folate’s role in RNA and DNA production and mutations prevention.
Glowing Tight Skin
Broccoli contains antioxidant vitamin C., And when eaten raw it can help prevent skin damage caused by ultraviolet rays from the sun and pollution. It also helps prevent wrinkles and improves skin texture.
One cup of broccoli provides 81 milligrams, which is more than recommended daily value. Vitamin C plays a crucial role in collagen formation which is the primary support system for the skin. Additionally, vitamin A and E in broccoli are also vital for healthy-looking skin.
Enhance the immune system
Vitamin C in broccoli plays a vital role in both innate and adaptive immunity. In addition, studies have confirmed that the chemical compound sulforaphane in broccoli helps in enhancing immune system functioning. (Source)
Raw, Steamed or Boiled: Which Is the Best for Ketogenic Diet?
Because broccoli is a low carb veggie, you can eat it raw, steamed, or boiled. However you should note that the way you prepare it can affect the nutrients you get.
If your aim is lose weight and also get anti-cancer benefits, be sure not to cook the veggie too long.
A 2007 research by the University of Warwick found out that boiling broccoli can affect its effectiveness in fighting cancer. Boiling results in losses in vital cancer-fighting nutrients and steaming, microwaving, or stir-frying doesn’t result in significant decline in cancer-fighting nutrients. Raw broccoli is excellent for ketogenic diet as it retains all of its nutrients.
Eating Broccoli on Keto Diet
Because broccoli is a keto-friendly vegetable, you should eat it regularly more than three times a week. To get the full benefits, including anti-cancer benefits, you should avoid boiling it and instead steam or eat it raw. Below are best ways to prepare broccoli:
Buy it fresh
Freezing broccoli affects its nutritional value, especially with water-soluble vitamins such as B vitamins and Vitamin C and some minerals. When buying fresh avoid broccoli with signs of discoloration (browning or yellowing) and choose ones with vibrant green color.
Eat stems and leaves
Don’t throw away the leaves and stems because they contain vital health-enhancing compounds. The stems take longer to cook, so make sure you cook them first. The leaves are high when eat raw or used as ingredients in soups, smoothies, and salads.
Final Thoughts on Broccoli on Ketosis
Eating broccoli won’t kick you out of ketosis. While it’s a ketogenic-friendly vegetable, broccoli should be eaten in moderation. Besides being a great addition to a ketogenic lifestyle, this veggie is also rich in other important nutrients that have immense benefits in disease prevention and boosting the immune system. To get the best out of your piece of broccoli, eat it raw, steamed, or cooked in the microwave.