Arugula Salad with Watercress, Radishes and Red Bell Peppers

Of all the cruciferous vegetables, broccoli may be the most famous for its cancer-preventive compounds. Its cruciferous relatives cauliflower and cabbage (green, red, Chinese, Savoy, Napa, etc.) share those protective compounds – as do Brussels sprouts, collard greens and kale.

You may not know, however, that lighter summer garden vegetables – radishes, watercress, arugula and mustard greens – are also cruciferous. What they all have in common are cross-shaped (cruciferae in Latin) flowers with four petals and powerful phytochemical compounds that research studies have associated with cancer prevention.

Radishes and mustard greens are healthy additions to your garden and your salads this summer. Watercress is too, although it needs to grow in a brook or stream – but it’s easy to find in most grocery stores. Add some shredded cabbage, steamed and chilled cauliflower florets for even more cruciferous variety.

Enjoy plenty of other non-cruciferous veggies as well to round out your cancer-preventing salads of delicious plant foods with more phytochemicals that all contribute to good health.

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