Herbaceous plant of the family of Crucíferas formed by short stem, erect, culminated in inflorescences (generally a central and larger and other lateral) and with leaves and lateral flowers. The edible part is its inflorescence, which appears somewhat less tight than in cauliflower, being greenish, grayish or purple.
It is native to the Mediterranean and Asia Minor. Historical references exist that the culture dates from before the Christian Era. It has been popular in Italy since the days of the Roman Empire and in France it has been cultivated since the 16th century; Yet it was unknown in England until a few centuries ago.
Like the rest of the cruciferous, broccoli has a great importance from the nutritional point of view, since it contains a high amount of vitamins. Specifically, it is a good source of provitamin A and vitamins C and folic acid, to the extent that one serving (200 g) provides more than three times the daily recommendations of vitamin C and half of the recommended intake of folic acid.
It is also a good source of minerals (potassium, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium and iron) and fiber. Broccoli also contains a significant proportion of sulfur, which gives it antimicrobial properties and insecticides, as well as being responsible for the strong odor of these vegetables during cooking.
Its consumption has been increased when recognizing important beneficial effects on health. Specifically, it has a protective effect against various types of cancer: lung, prostate, breast, endometrium, uterus, and tumors related to the gastrointestinal tract (stomach, liver, colon), and also contains quercetin, a flavonoid Acts as an anti-inflammatory, and its high content of beta-carotene and vitamin C helps the immune system to function properly and prevent other degenerative diseases such as cardiovascular diseases.