With one exception: cauliflower “rice”.
From cauliflower mash to cauliflower pizza, cauliflower is all the rage as a smart carb, low-carb substitute for common blood sugar-spiking processed “white foods”.
Cauliflower is the other “white food”, of which I eat plenty! Why? Because it is a cruciferous vegetable, and cruciferous vegetables are KEY if you want to reduce inflammation and balance hormones. They are chockfull of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants—and high in fiber. Eating them on a regular basis—and within the context of an overall healthy diet and lifestyle—can help lower cancer risk and protect against heart disease.
If you are taking birth control pills (or took birth control pills for any length of time); if you are on Hormone Replacement Therapy (a.k.a., HRT, any combination of synthetic estrogen + progestin); if you have hypothyroidism/Hashimoto’s, adrenal dysfunction; PCOS or fibroids; if you are overweight / obese; if you are chronically exposed to environmental estrogens (e.g., plastics, pesticides, perfumes, etc.)….you likely have estrogen dominance. Unfortunately, most women do today.
The symptoms of estrogen dominance, where your estrogen levels are high relative to progesterone, can manifest as bloating, swollen or lumpy breasts, fibroids, mood swings, weight gain, anxiety and/or brain fog.
In order to help clear excess estrogen out of the body, it is important to optimize liver health. One way to do this is by eating cruciferous vegetables, which are high in fiber and sulforaphane, a sulfur-rich compound with cancer-fighting, heart protective and blood sugar balancing benefits. They help promote estrogen clearance …as in…you poop excess estrogen out. Personally, I recommend eating COOKED cruciferous (versus raw), especially if you have digestive issues, like constipation, bloating or gas, or hypothyroidism / Hashimoto’s.
I admit…although I have always enjoyed eating leafy cruciferous greens, like bok choy, choy sum, arugula, kale and mustard greens, it took me a while to warm up to non-leafy cruciferous vegs, like broccoli and cauliflower.
But…organic cauliflower rice changed everything! It’s widely available fresh or frozen. It’s easy to cook and easy to digest. It has become my go-to non-starchy “carb” because it’s so versatile. I even include it in smoothies because it adds a delicious creamy texture. Like this Blueberry-Cauliflower Smoothie where cardamom adds a dash of bright sweetness.
1 cup frozen organic blueberries
1/2 cup cooked org cauliflower rice
1 scoop grain-free, sugar-free protein powder*
*I recommend 100% organic pea protein or 100% grass-fed beef protein
2 tablespoons hemp seed
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 cup org unsweetened hemp milk or unsweetened coconut milk or filtered water
Blend in a Nutribullet or high-powered blender until creamy.