Why Chicken And Broccoli Is Such A Healthy Combination

Chicken and broccoli is a common food combination that can be easily prepared at home, or ordered from a variety of restaurants. The popular combo can be found on the menus of many types of restaurants — including American, Italian, and Chinese. While they may be created differently, there is a reason this dish is duplicated so often. According to Livestrong, the blend of nutrients from the two foods provides a substantial amount of healthy nutrients with a minimal amount of calories and fat which, when added to your daily diet, can help with weight loss.

Chicken breasts are low in calories, approximately 122 calories per three ounces, and are rich in essential nutrients such as niacin, selenium, and phosphorus. A small 3-ounce chicken breast is low in fat and offers up a whopping 23 grams of protein, which plays a pivotal role in helping to build and repair tissues while maintaining muscle mass. (via Healthline).

The skinny on broccoli

Just over one cup of broccoli has only 34 calories, 6.6 carbohydrates, and around three grams of protein. You can also find a good amount of vitamins C and K in broccoli, as well as fiber and folate. According to Healthline, some of broccoli's substantial health benefits come from its high antioxidant content. That includes supporting healthy cells, reducing inflammation, and possibly helping with blood sugar control. 

According to WebMD, broccoli is one of the best vegetables you can add to your plate because, one of its natural compounds, sulforaphane, may help stop cancer cells from forming in the body. Due to its fiber content, broccoli may also help with healthy digestion and reduce occurrences of constipation.

Not just any chicken and broccoli will do, as the way the food is made will determine how healthy it is. For instance, grilled and baked chicken, with minimal ingredients, is better than frying, which can add more calories and unhealthy fats to the food (via American Heart Association). Roasted or raw broccoli is healthier than it would be covered in a thick cheese sauce, or boiled in water, which can reduce its nutrient content by up to 90 percent.

The bottom line is adding well-prepared chicken and broccoli into your mix of meals can benefit your overall health — and your waistline.