Doctor says broccoli is the best vegetable for you

A basket of vegetables.
A basket of vegetables. Photo credit: Getty

A British TV Doctor says broccoli is the healthiest vegetable due to its effect on the gut.

The Mail Online reports Dr Rangan Chatterjee, from the BBC programme Doctor in the House, believes the stalky green vegetable is best because it boosts gut bacteria.

Research has suggested the good bacteria in the gut are important for supporting immune systems and improving bowel health.

"There is more science emerging now that the health and interaction of those gut bugs has a profound influence not only on our digestive function but also on our mood and brain function," Dr Chatterjee told the Mail Online.

"Gut bacteria may be implicated in our weight and joint pain. We are realising more and more that our gut is very important. A lot of modern living is trashing our guts."

Broccoli plays a part in this by giving the bacteria in the gut something to feed on, fibre that is not digested in the small intestine and makes its way to the bowel.

"Most of the gut bugs reside [in the bowel] and they start feasting on the fibre and making short chain fatty acids," Dr Chatterjee told the Mail Online.

"Short chain fatty acids are important for colon health."

Dr Chatterjee called the gut an "intersection" in the body and says it's important for the immune system too because seventy percent of immune system activity occurs in the gut.

"There is a three way interaction, your food choices, your gut bugs and your immune system," he told the Mail Online.

"Inflammation comes from your immune system…  Those gut bugs talk to your immune system and send it messages."

"Those messages determine… whether [your body] is going to have inflammatory messages around the body or whether it is going to have an anti-inflammatory messaging profile."