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11 Health Benefits of Brussels Sprouts

From glowing skin to better gut health, the health benefits of Brussels sprouts make this vegetable worth eating.

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Bowl of Brussels sprouts and napkin on a rustic wooden table.Cavan Images/Getty Images

Lower Your Risk for Heart Disease

This quintessential fall side dish is so much more than an excuse to eat more bacon. Brussels sprouts are loaded with healthy nutrients like vitamin C. Studies have linked a diet rich in vitamin C from fruits and vegetables to a lower risk for chronic cardiovascular disease.

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Garlic-Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Mustard SauceTaste of Home

Pack Antioxidants

Brussels sprouts are rich in antioxidants, compounds that contribute to healthier cells and a lower risk of cancer. Try chopping fresh Brussels sprouts for a salad or roasting them with garlic and a savory mustard sauce for an easy and delicious weeknight side dish.

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High Angle View Of Brussels Sprout In Frying Pan On TableJulia Nagy / EyeEm/Getty Images

Provide Plant-Based Protein

One cup of Brussels sprouts provides 4 grams of healthy, plant-based protein. This is especially helpful if you follow a vegan or vegetarian meal plan and need more sources of natural protein in your diet. Try roasting Brussels sprouts in olive oil or adding interesting flavors like pomegranate and hazelnut.

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Strengthen Your Bones

Brussels sprouts are rich in vitamin K, which may improve your bone strength and prevent injuries. A 2017 study found that eating a diet rich in vitamin K everyday was associated with a lower risk of fractures. Give your bones a dose of vitamin K and calcium with these delicious Brussels sprouts au gratin. Your taste buds will thank you, too!

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Mans hands holding handful of Brussels sprouts.Catherine MacBride/Getty Images

Improve Gut Health

These tasty little veggies are packed with fiber, which can improve your gut health in several different ways. From preventing constipation to lowering your risk of colorectal cancer, a diet rich in fiber is essential for a healthy gut and body.

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Close-Up Of Brussels Sprout On FabricMichael Moeller / EyeEm/Getty Images

Reduce Inflammation

Eating a well-balanced diet full of cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and Brussels sprouts can reduce unwanted inflammation in your body. Over time, inflammation can lead to chronic disease, so giving your cells a hit of healthy veggies, like in this roasted green vegetable medley, can help protect them.

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Help Prevent Birth Defects

If you’re planning on growing your family, it’s time to add some Brussels sprouts recipes to your diet. Brussels sprouts are a natural source of folate, an essential nutrient for preventing certain birth defects. In addition to taking prenatal vitamins, eating foods with folate can help to prevent defects in your baby’s brain and spine.

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Brussels Sprouts being prepared at a kitchen sink in readiness for Christmas DinnerCatherine MacBride/Getty Images

Support Eye Health

Like carrots and sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts are rich in carotenoids, nutrients that can be converted to vitamin A in your body. Eating foods with carotenoids is associated with improved eye health and preventing eye damage caused by blue light (looking at you, phone screen.)

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brussels sprouts hot off the stove with steam rising from the panLara Hata/Getty Images

Control Diabetes

Lower your risk for diabetes when you start cooking with cruciferous vegetables every day. A 2016 study found that people who regularly eat those crunchy veggies have a significantly lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Add roasted Brussels sprouts as a side dish or make it the main event with flavorful ginger halibut.

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shredded gingered brussels sproutsTaste of Home

Make Skin Glow

Say buh-bye to tired, dull-looking skin when you start adding Brussels sprouts into your diet. Because it’s full of vitamin C, this yummy veggie contributes to collagen production, keeping your skin firm and glowing. Spice up your next meal time with shredded ginger Brussels sprouts for that youthful glow.

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Brussels sprout buns on white wooden table surface and little red pot with green sprouts blurred in background. Selective focus, copy spaceYulia-Images/Getty Images

Supply Healthy Fats

If you’re not a fish fan, you may have a challenging time getting enough omega-3 fatty acids in your diet. Fortunately, Brussels sprouts are rich in alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), which is converted to omega-3’s in your body. These nutrients have been proven to improve cholesterol levels, lower blood pressure and prevent heart disease.

Carrie Madormo, RN
Now a freelance health and food writer, Carrie worked as a nurse for over a decade. When she isn't hunched over her laptop with a baby in hand, you will find her cooking her grandmother’s recipes, lacing up her running shoes or sipping coffee in the bathroom to hide from her three young children.

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