Understanding a clinical trial’s broccoli sprout amount

To follow up Week 2 of Changing an inflammatory phenotype with broccoli sprouts, I contacted the model clinical trial’s corresponding coauthor to clarify a citation. Our correspondence was as follows:

Hello Dr.! Could you further describe Citation 11 of your 2018 clinical study Effects of long-term consumption of broccoli sprouts on inflammatory markers in overweight subjects or say where it may be found? “Services, F. a. D. A. F. U. D. o. H. a. H., 2001.” was cited for 30 grams of fresh broccoli sprouts being a half-serving.


Ref. 11. Sulforaphane: translational research from laboratory bench to clinic CA Houghton, RG Fassett, JS Coombes – Nutrition reviews, 2013.

If you check in the table 2, about clinical trials, different studies using broccoli sprouts were establishing daily dosage around 60 g/day (e.g. 56 – 68, etc.). In a similar way, in our previous studies for bioavailability with broccoli sprouts (Domínguez-Perles et al.) we also considered 30 g and 60 g was 1/2 and 1 portion per day, respectively, of broccoli sprouts.

When we carried out tests with consumers, previous to the bioavailability studies (Domínguez-Perles et al., Baenas et al.), higher amounts per day, were not easy to consume and to get eaten by participants. The people or general public in Spain is not very familiar (yet) with these fresh sprouts as may be in USA, or UK, for example. That why we took a “realistic” amount of broccoli sprouts per day, to be incorporated in daily diet.

Of course, with higher amounts we could even probably see better results, but that would not be realistic for a food to be incorporated in daily diet – the purpose of the “prevention” perspective of this work.

I hope that I help you to understand why we selected that amount or the doubts about it. Thank you very much for your interest in the work.


Thank you very much Dr.! It’s encouraging that healthy people were the subjects of your 2018 clinical trial.

May I obtain your permission to use your excellent explanation as a follow up to my blog post?

I and several other people are using your study as the model to improve our health during this lockdown. There have been a lot of errors on my part, but our methods are improving.


Yes, you can use the information, of course. The participants were “healthy” overweight subjects (without medication or treatments of any disease, just adults with overweight). Please, keep safe and have a nice week.


Attached to the last email was his latest coauthored review The Role of Brassica Bioactives on Human Health: Are We Studying It the Right Way? published March 30, 2020, curated in Reviewing clinical trials of broccoli sprouts and their compounds.

“Figure 1 – General scheme of the glucosinolates (GSLs) and common hydrolysis products. ESP: Epithiospecifer proteins.”

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