Reviewed on 6/11/2021
Other Name(s):

Blumenkohl, Brassica oleracea, Brassica oleracea var. botrytis, Cavolfiore, Cavolo Broccoli, Cavolfiore, Cavolo Fiore, Chou Broccoli, Chou Fleur, Chou Fleur D'hiver, Coliflor, Common Cauliflower, Couve Flor, Hana Kyabetsu, Hana Yasai, Hua Ye Cai, Kalafior, Kapusta Tsvetnaia, Karifurawaa, Kopfbrokkoli, Lillkapsas, Phuul Gobhii.


Cauliflower is a vegetable. The head or curd of cauliflower is commonly eaten as food or as a medicine.

Cauliflower is taken by mouth as an antioxidant and to increase urination; for anemia, menopause, scurvy, and weight loss; and to prevent bladder cancer, breast cancer, heart disease, diabetes, stroke, lung cancer, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, osteoporosis, and prostate cancer.

How does it work?

Cauliflower contains chemicals that might help the body get rid of components from food or the environment that are thought to cause cancer. Cauliflower might also have antioxidant activity.


Next to red peppers, you can get the most vitamin C from ________________. See Answer

Uses & Effectiveness

Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...

  • Bladder cancer: There is some evidence that people who eat large amounts of cauliflower and related vegetables have a lower risk of developing bladder cancer. However, some conflicting results suggest that eating cauliflower alone is not linked with a lower risk of bladder cancer.
  • Breast cancer: Some early research suggests that eating cauliflower and related vegetables is linked with a slight increase in the risk of breast cancer in premenopausal women. However, eating cauliflower and related vegetables does not appear to be linked with breast cancer risk in postmenopausal women.
  • Diabetes: Early research suggests that women who eat cauliflower and related vegetables do not have a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes compared to those who don't eat these vegetables.
  • Stroke that is caused by a clot (ischemic stroke): Early research suggests that eating larger amounts of cauliflower and related vegetables is linked with a lower risk of ischemic stroke in some people.
  • Lung cancer: Early research shows that eating larger amounts of cauliflower is linked with a lower risk of developing lung cancer in women but not men.
  • Non-Hodgkin lymphoma: Early research suggests that women who eat larger amounts of cauliflower and related vegetables have a lower risk of developing non-Hodgkin lymphoma. However, eating cauliflower and related vegetables does not seem to be linked with a lower risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma in men.
  • Prostate cancer: Early research shows that people who eat larger amounts of cauliflower and related vegetables have a lower risk of developing prostate cancer.
  • Menopause.
  • Scurvy.
  • Weight loss.
  • Heart disease.
  • Osteoporosis.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of cauliflower for these uses.

Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate (detailed description of each of the ratings).

Side Effects

Cauliflower is LIKELY SAFE when consumed in food amounts. It isn't known if cauliflower is safe or what the possible side effects might be when taken in medicinal amounts.


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Special Precautions & Warnings

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There isn't enough information about the safety of eating cauliflower in medicinal amounts during pregnancy or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and stick to usual food amounts.


Medications changed by the liver (Cytochrome P450 1A2 (CYP1A2) substrates)Interaction Rating: Moderate Be cautious with this combination.Talk with your health provider.

Some medications are changed and broken down by the liver.

Cauliflower might increase how quickly the liver breaks down some medications. Taking cauliflower along with some medications that are changed by the liver can decrease the effectiveness of some medications. Before taking cauliflower talk to your healthcare provider if you take any medications that are changed by the liver.

Some of these medications that are changed by the liver include clozapine (Clozaril), cyclobenzaprine (Flexeril), fluvoxamine (Luvox), haloperidol (Haldol), imipramine (Tofranil), mexiletine (Mexitil), olanzapine (Zyprexa), pentazocine (Talwin), propranolol (Inderal), tacrine (Cognex), theophylline, zileuton (Zyflo), zolmitriptan (Zomig), and others.


The appropriate dose of cauliflower depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for cauliflower. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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