Posted on Sep 23, 2013, 6 a.m.
Sulforaphane, a compound found abundantly in cruciferous vegetables, may help to prevent or slow cartilage destruction.
Cruciferous vegetables – such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and cabbage – are a rich source of sulforaphane, a compound for which previous studies suggest an anti-inflammatory effect. Ian Clark, from the University of East Anglia (United Kingdom), and colleagues have shown that sulforaphane slows down the destruction of cartilage in joints associated with painful and often debilitating osteoarthritis. The researchers found that mice fed a diet rich in the compound had significantly less cartilage damage and osteoarthritis than those that were not. The study also examined human cartilage cells and cow cartilage tissue, finding that sulforaphane blocks the enzymes that cause joint destruction by stopping a key molecule known to cause inflammation. Observing that: “A [sulforaphane]-rich diet decreases arthritis score in the [destabilisation of medial meniscus] murine model of osteoarthritis,” the study authors conclude that: “[Sulforaphane] inhibits the expression of key metalloproteinases implicated in osteoarthritis … and blocks inflammation at … to protect against cartilage destruction in vitro and in vivo.”
Rose K Davidson, Orla Jupp, Rachel de Ferrars, Colin D Kay, Kirsty L Culley, Ian M Clark, et al. “Sulforaphane represses matrix-degrading proteases and protects cartilage from destruction in vitro and in vivo.” Arthritis & Rheumatism, 27 August 2013.