Cauliflower is a vegetable that is eaten across the world. It belongs to the Brassicaceae family. The word cauliflower is derived from an Italian word “cavolfiore”, meaning ‘cabbage flower’. Cauliflower has a significant amount of nutrients which are important for the body. Moreover, it also has a lot of health benefits for people. More importantly, the carbs in cauliflower are insignificant; that is, the quantity of carbs in cauliflower is only 5 grams per cup (100 grams). In addition to this, only 3 grams are counted as net carbs in cauliflower as the other two grams are fibre, which are considered important for your health.
In this article, we will be dealing with the nutritional facts of cauliflower, benefits of cauliflower, the risks associated with cauliflower, and the different ways in which you can cook them; here, we will make passing reference to the carbs in cauliflower as its insignificant quantity can be helpful for people who are on a diet.
Nutritional facts of cauliflower:
According to the USDA, a one head medium cauliflower (that is, 588 grams) contains the following nutritional value:
● Calories: 146
● Cholesterol: 0 milligrams
● Total fat: 1.6 grams
● Sodium: 176 milligrams
● Total carbohydrates: 29 grams
○ Sugar: 11 grams
○ Dietary fiber: 12 grams
● Potassium: 1758 milligrams
● Protein: 11 grams
● Vitamin C
● Vitamin K
● Vitamin B- 6
● Omega-3 fatty acids
Benefits of Cauliflower:
● High in nutritional value:
From the above-provided list of nutrients present in cauliflower, we can imply that cauliflower is enriched with vitamins and minerals.
● Contains fibre:
We can also infer that cauliflower is an excellent source of fibre as it contains 3 grams of fibre in every 100 grams. And, fibre is important for your health because:
○ They make your intestine muscles stronger by making them exercise as they are hard to digest. Therefore, it allows you to get rid of different digestive problems such as constipation, inflammatory bowels, diverticulitis, etc.
○ And since digesting them is a time consuming process, it makes you feel that your stomach is full. This allows you to restrain from eating junk food.
● Aids in weight loss:
Cauliflower consists of low calories, lots of fibre, and water (92% of the cauliflower’s weight is water). All these qualities make cauliflower the best vegetable for people wanting to lose weight.
● Great source of antioxidants:
Cauliflower is a great source of two antioxidants: glucosinolates and isothiocyanates, which are considered to have reduced the growth of the cancer cells. It also contains more antioxidants known to have reduced the risk of heart diseases and boost the immune system.
● Contains sufficient amount of Choline:
Choline is an essential nutrient which is not found in many food products. Hence, most people are deficient in Choline. However, cauliflower is one of the few vegetables to contain an adequate amount (45 milligrams in one cup) of Choline. Choline is significant because it is involved in synthesising DNA, brain development, production of neurotransmitters. It also supports metabolism and prevents cholesterol accumulation in the liver. Thus, it reduces the risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s.
● Low carb alternative:
Since cauliflower contains a low quantity of carbs, it is preferred by people on their keto diets and otherwise also.
● Contains sulforaphane:
Sulforaphane is an essential nutrient required by the body. It helps against the development of cancer, tumour, high blood pressure. It also reduces the risk of heart diseases, diabetes and kidney disease.
● Versatile nature of cauliflower:
They are easy to add to the diet as they can be practically added to any dish with some twists and turns
Risks associated with cauliflower:
Although cauliflowers have innumerable merits, however eating a large quantity of cauliflower can be detrimental to health. Provided below are some of the unwanted effects of cauliflower:
● Blood clotting:
Consuming high levels of vitamin K may cause repercussions for people on blood thinners. This is so because vitamin K aids in blood clotting.
● Bloating and flatulence:
Huge intakes of cauliflower while starting your diet can lead to bloating and flatulence. Therefore, it is advisable to start with low quantities of cauliflower, check any bloating symptoms, and then gradually increase the amount of cauliflower intake.
Different recipes that can be made out of cauliflower:
Provided below are some of the recipes that you can make from cauliflower:
● Loaded cauliflower bake
● Rosemary cauliflower mash and gravy
● Low- carb cauliflower hummus