Broccoli is native to the shores of the Mediterranean. The Italians were the first to cultivate broccoli, and it quickly became a favorite food in ancient Rome. It was introduced to France in the 1500s, and then to England in the mid-18th century. Broccoli arrived in America during colonial times. George Washington and Thomas Jefferson both grew it in their kitchen gardens. California and Arizona produce 99% of the U.S. broccoli crop.
- supplies viamin C, necessary for building healthy blood vessels and cartilage
- prevents anemia by enhancing the absorption of iron from other foods
- assists in making thyroxin, which regulates the matabolic rate
- a gold mine of potent cancer-fighting chemicals such as beta carotene