By Mike Pomranz
Updated April 21, 2015
Credit: © Iain Bagwell

One reason broccoli is considered so healthy is that the vegetable contains a compound called glucoraphanin that is known, among other benefits, to reduced bad LDL cholesterol. Armed with that knowledge, scientists set to work making a high-glucoraphanin broccoli. But until now, no one really knew if this super-broccoli really did what it was supposed to.

The new broccoli is called Beneforté and contains two to three times the normal levels of glucoraphanin. Even though it has been on store shelves for a while, researchers have just gotten around to running trials to see its effects. Remarkably, results of trials conducted by the Institute of Food Research with help from the University of Reading show that, indeed, when 130 volunteers were given 400 grams of Beneforté to add to their weekly diet, LDL-cholesterol levels dropped by an average of about 6 percent after 12 weeks.

It’s also worth noting that creating a better broccoli wasn’t particularly high-tech, either. Scientists simply used natural, traditional breeding methods, crossing high-glucoraphanin plants with other high-glucoraphanin plants. Now the resulting spawn is the green of our health dreams.

For those looking to pack a few extra helpings of broccoli into their meals, here are some excellent ways to do it.