Cartoon by Natalie Dee
I may have mentioned before that I'm one of those crackpots who will often heed the results of the health studies I read.
For example, years ago I read that red bell peppers have more nutrients than green ones, and blue potatoes have more than white ones. So I will actually go out of my way to buy blue potatoes and red bell peppers.
I know full well that often these studies are followed up by newer studies that say the opposite. But when I'm not tearing my hair out cursing all the conflicting studies, I tend to remember the last thing I read, and if possible, I do what it says.
On the other hand, sometimes when I don't like the results, I pretend I never even read the study.
Like when I read that you shouldn't put milk in your tea or you won't get any of the antioxidant benefits. I tried tea without milk, didn't like it, and so I said "Feh! I'll drink it the way I like it!" (Actually, I'm guessing I used a different word than "feh," but I bet it also started with an "f".) And while the jury is still out on the whole issue, at least one tea with milk study came along and said--nah, it's ok--go ahead and add milk if you like.
So what's the latest study I plan to ignore?
One that says raw broccoli delivers ten times more of the anti-carcinogen sulforaphane than cooked broccoli.
Which is great news for all you folks who like it raw!
But I hate raw broccoli and don't mind it cooked. More specifically, I like it best if it's overcooked, and combined with other tasty ingredients like olive oil or garlic or cheese.
(And yes, there was indeed an earlier study that said the opposite: that cooking broccoli increased antioxidants. But alas, there's a difference between how much of the good stuff is in the food, and how much actually ends up in your bloodstream, so that's part of the reason the studies go back and forth. Am I ridiculously obsessed with stupid unpredictable antioxidants that keep changing their minds? Yep, apparently so!)
Anyway, as much as I like the idea of all that virtuous sulforaphane being ready and available in raw broccoli, I'm still going to cook the hell out of it. Of course, I could just eat TEN TIMES AS MUCH broccoli as I used to in order to make up for the fact that I cook it, but I think I'd rather say "screw it" and croak a decade or so earlier.
Oh wait. Wasn't I just saying the other day about how I'm feeling all inspired to be more positive on the blog from now on, and not quite so Cranky?
Hang on, I'm thinking...
(If this blog had a soundtrack, harp music would now be playing...)
Broccoli may have been the vegetable they studied, but it isn't the only one that has sulforaphane in it, right? There's cabbage and cauliflower and some other ones too. I bet they're also pretty powerful cancer fighters if eaten raw.
Raw cabbage... that's coleslaw! And raw cauliflower.... that's not so bad! Especially if you dip it in something yummy. (At the moment, let's ignore the fact that most yummy dips are full of saturated fats or the wrong omega's or whatever.)
So until the scientists change their minds again, I'll skip the raw broccoli, but please pass the raw cauliflower and dip. And I'll take a side order of coleslaw!
(Anyone placing bets on how long this whole "have a more positive attitude" thing is gonna last?)
Does anyone else read about health research only to ignore the findings they don't like? Anything in particular you're ignoring at the moment?