Can Broccoli Help Build Muscle? [Solved]

You've probably seen bodybuilders eat chicken, rice, and broccoli, but can broccoli really help you build muscle mass?

Yes, but also no.

Broccoli, in and of itself, does not help you build muscle, but a chemical present in broccoli may assist you in doing so.

Table of Contents:

can broccoli help build muscle

What Exactly Is Broccoli?

Broccoli is a leafy green vegetable that is a member of the cabbage family. It is eaten raw or cooked.

It is a cultivar of the plant Brassica oleracea that belongs to the Italica cultivar group, and it is a member of the Brassica oleracea genus.

Broccoli contains a number of different minerals and vitamins, including the ones listed below.

  • Fibre

  • Vitamin K

  • Vitamin C

  • Vitamin B9 (pyridoxine)

  • Iron

  • Manganese

  • Potassium

The fact that it has a much greater protein content (around 29 percent of its dry weight) than the majority of other vegetables may possibly be a contributing factor to bodybuilders and fitness fanatics consuming this vegetable on a regular basis.

Although protein is important for muscle development, the quantity of broccoli you would need to eat in order to obtain a sufficient amount of protein is prohibitively large.

Veggies may be consumed raw or cooked, but according to a recent research, steaming vegetables provides the most nutritional advantages when cooking them. (Reference)

However, broccoli's high vitamin, mineral, and protein content is not what distinguishes it from the competition when it comes to muscle growth.


The Active Ingredients In Broccoli

Broccoli includes a variety of active compounds, which are listed below.

  1. Sulforaphane

  2. Quercetin

  3. Kaempferol

  4. Carotenoids

In the sections that follow, I'll go into much more detail about each of these active ingredients.

Quercetin and sulforaphane are the two most significant compounds found in broccoli, and they are both found in high concentrations.


Sulforaphane, a chemical component found in broccoli and one of the most common and extensively studied plant chemicals, may offer protection against a range of cancers and other illnesses, according to this recent study.

It also has the additional effect of lowering the amount of myostatin in the body, which is responsible for restricting muscle development. (Reference)

As a result, it is possible that sulforaphane has the potential to stimulate muscle development.

Sulforaphane may have multiple benefits other muscle growth too.



The fact that quercetin has the potential to decrease inflammation while also acting as a powerful antioxidant suggests that it is beneficial for general health.

Quercetin has been shown to enhance exercise performance, allowing you to get more out of your exercises. (Reference)

As a result, the quercetin contained in broccoli may assist you in increasing your muscle mass.

Many other benefits of quercetin exist, such as the ability to reduce the risk of heart and brain disease, allergies and even diabetes. (Reference)



Kaempferol, an antioxidant with many health benefits, may be beneficial in the prevention of heart disease, cancer, inflammation, and allergy symptoms, among other things.

This is beneficial to one's general health, particularly if one is a fitness fanatic who engages in regular physical activity.


Broccoli contains the antioxidants lutein, zeaxanthin, and beta-carotene, all of which have been shown to be helpful to eye and overall health in studies.

They may also be helpful to the immune system as well as overall physical development.

Can Broccoli Help You Build Muscle?

Broccoli itself does not contribute much to muscle growth.

Two chemicals present in broccoli, on the other hand, may aid in the development of muscle.

Sulforaphane, a chemical molecule, has the potential to decrease myostatin levels in the body.

Myostatin inhibits the body's capacity to build new muscle, thus lowering myostatin levels allows you to build muscle more quickly.

Another component present in broccoli is quercetin, which has been shown to aid enhance exercise performance.

Improving your exercise performance may help you get more out of your exercises, which in turn can help you gain more muscle mass.

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