On the Menu: Cancer-Fighting Super Foods

Simply the mere point out of the “C” phrase strikes terror in us all. Everyone knows a member of the family, a good friend, a coworker, or a neighbor who’s presently battling most cancers, has survived most cancers, or died from most cancers.

The Nationwide Most cancers Institute estimates that 13.7 million Individuals are presently dwelling with or have survived most cancers, and one other 1.6 million of us can be recognized with the illness this 12 months.

However researchers are hopeful. They’re discovering that Mom Nature loaded lots of her finest cancer-fighting weapons within the meals we eat. Although no panacea exists-no single fruit or vegetable that may ship complete protection-studies present diets wealthy particularly meals might assist us decrease our danger.

I requested a number of most cancers specialists and dietitians to call a number of meals that will have the flexibility to stop or gradual the development of most cancers. Listed below are the all-stars they advocate to their sufferers.

GROUND FLAXSEEDS

Most cancers-fighting brokers: Lignans, fiber, Omega-Three important fatty acids

Could assist struggle: Breast and prostate cancers

“I like to recommend consuming cold-milled, floor flaxseed-maybe two to a few tablespoons per day,” remarks Anup Lahiry, M.D., an oncologist and hematologist on the Longstreet Clinic in Gainesville, Georgia.

Floor flaxseed is a extremely concentrated supply of secoisolariciresinol diglucoside (SDG) lignans, that are phytonutrients-plant-based micronutrients that supply many well being advantages and should assist stave off most cancers.

Lahiry suggests including floor flaxseed to oatmeal, cereal, yogurt, smoothies, casseroles, chili, and darkish sauces.

BLUEBERRIES

Most cancers-fighting brokers: Dietary fiber, vitamin C, flavonoids, ellagic acid

Could assist struggle: Cancers of the colon and rectum and probably cancers of the mouth, pharynx, larynx, esophagus, lung and abdomen

“Blueberries appear to be on the highest of everybody’s tremendous meals record, and for good cause,” says Rachel White, an oncology registered dietitian with the Wellstar Most cancers Community in Georgia. “Not solely are blueberries glorious sources of vitamin C, vitamin Ok, manganese, and fiber, but additionally highly effective phytochemicals, corresponding to flavonoids and resveratrol.”

At 85 energy per cup, blueberries are tasty whether or not washed and eaten by the handful or blended in oatmeal, tossed atop cereal, or blended right into a smoothie.

LEGUMES

Most cancers-fighting brokers: Dietary fiber, folate, lignans, flavonoids, and inositol

Could assist struggle: Colon, rectum, breast, prostate and pancreas cancers

Legumes, which embody black beans, pinto beans, kidney beans, black-eyed peas, garbanzo beans (chickpeas), lentils, soybeans, and different beans, include an abundance of health-promoting substances that will defend people from most cancers.

“Raw, dried beans and canned beans present the identical advantages,” notes White. “If you happen to select canned beans, it is best to go along with these with out added salt or drain and rinse them to take away as a lot sodium as attainable. Legumes are wealthy in fiber, protein, nutritional vitamins, and phytochemicals and make scrumptious soups, salads and dips.”

RED PEPPERS

Most cancers-fighting agent: Capsaicin

Could assist struggle: Prostate, abdomen, and lung cancers; and leukemia

“Crimson peppers include capsaicin, a cancer-fighting part considerable in paprika, chili peppers, cayenne peppers, and different sizzling peppers,” says Colleen McCarthy, a registered and licensed dietitian at On Pointe Diet in Alpharetta, Georgia.

She cites a 2006 research revealed in The Journal of Most cancers Analysis by Akio Mori and others suggesting that capsaicin has a task within the administration of prostate most cancers.

“Capsaicin down-regulates the expression of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) and androgen receptor (AR), and it additionally has a direct inhibitory impact on PSA transcription,” says McCarthy. “In additional research, capsaicin has proven promise in slowing the expansion of prostate most cancers and managing different facets of the illness, too.”

The warmer peppers-the torturous ones-contain essentially the most capsaicin and should pack the largest cancer-fighting punches.

SWEET POTATOES

Most cancers preventing brokers: Alpha-carotene, beta carotene

Could assist struggle: Prostate and different cancers

Candy potatoes, together with different meals wealthy in carotene (carrots, pumpkin, winter squash, citrus fruits, purple candy peppers, and tomatoes) might assist cut back the chance of many kinds of most cancers by their potent antioxidant capability.

“Consuming these meals might present an anti-cancer impact by decreasing the free radical oxidation charges of cells,” says McCarthy. “Consuming all kinds of meals wealthy in carotenoids will present a greater impact than a single consumption of 1 sort of meals wealthy in carotene.”

TURMERIC

Most cancers-fighting agent: Curcumin

Could assist struggle: Lung, breast, ovarian, gastrointestinal, and different cancers; leukemia; and melanoma

Turmeric, the yellow spice present in Indian curries, incorporates the highly effective cancer-fighting antioxidant, curcumin.

“There is a research from 2008 [P. Anand and others in Cancer Letters] suggesting curcumin might gradual or stop tumor progress,” notes McCarthy. “It reduces total irritation and has an total advantage of interfering with many cell sign pathways corresponding to cell cycle, cell apoptosis (cell demise), discount of irritation, and cell metastasis.”

Think about including a splash of turmeric to soups, greens, and salad dressings, however a phrase of caution-consult together with your physician first as a result of turmeric might intrude with different medicines.

ACTIVE CULTURE YOGURT

Most cancers-fighting brokers: Lactobacillus acidophilus and calcium

Could assist struggle: Colon and bladder cancers

“Yogurt with lively cultures [containing living micro-organisms] is a probiotic that enhances wholesome intestine micro organism and the intestine immune system,” remarks Daniel Dubovsky, M. D., an oncologist at Atlanta Most cancers Care, a medical observe affiliated with Northside Hospital Most cancers Institute. “In 2011, Pala revealed information indicating yogurt consumption was related to decreased colorectal most cancers danger. And Larsson, from the Karolinska Institute, reported decrease bladder most cancers charges related to the consumption of yogurt and cultured milk merchandise.”

BROCCOLI

Most cancers-fighting brokers: Dietary fiber, sulfur compounds, indoles, phenols, folate, vitamin C, and glucosinolates

Could assist struggle: Colorectal, abdomen, bladder, breast, and lung cancers

All cruciferous veggies (broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, kale, cauliflower, turnips) boast spectacular cancer-fighting properties, however broccoli is a famous person.

“Due to its fiber content material, broccoli has a powerful hyperlink to colorectal most cancers prevention-especially in youthful sufferers and people with histories of smoking,” says Laura Pearson, M.D., the medical director for North Fulton Hospital’s breast well being program in Roswell, Georgia. “It incorporates sulfur compounds that act as antioxidants and rid the physique of carcinogens and indoles that assist block estrogen receptors that are necessary in hormone-sensitive breast cancers. It additionally incorporates phenols that scavenge free-radicals regarded as culprits in most cancers formation.”

Pearson warns her sufferers that an all-broccoli eating regimen won’t treatment most cancers.

“Eat quite a lot of recent, colourful, minimally-cooked vegetables and fruit,” she stresses. “A tacky broccoli casserole tastes good, however steaming it or including raw broccoli to a salad are higher decisions for illness prevention.”

ALMONDS

Most cancers-fighting brokers:Benzaldehyde, fiber, alpha-tocopherol (a type of vitamin E)

Could Assist Struggle: Breast, prostate, and different cancers

Almonds are a tasty, considerable supply of vitamin E, a fat-soluble vitamin with distinctive antioxidant properties that defend cells from the damaging, cancer-causing results of free radicals.

“Additionally they include benzaldehyde, a compound that researchers in Japan consider to be poisonous to most cancers cells,” says Amy Strattner, a registered dietitian at Northside Hospital Diabetes and Diet Companies in metro Atlanta. “I counsel spreading almond butter on entire grain toast, serving a handful with apples for a excessive power snack that gives cancer-fighting fiber, or consuming a glass of almond milk which additionally supplies the physique with calcium.”

GREEN TEA

Most cancers-fighting brokers: Polyphenols, particularly the catechins and the amino acid, theanine

Could assist struggle: Abdomen, esophageal, ovarian, colon and different cancers

Inexperienced tea, in addition to different teas, include catechins, compounds that scientists consider might assist cease the expansion of most cancers cells and forestall cell mutations that contribute to most cancers growth.

“Fashionable research in each Asia and the West have proven encouraging outcomes indicating that inexperienced tea contributes to preventing abdomen, esophageal, ovarian, and colon cancers,” says Strattner. “It is a fantastic low-calorie beverage to sip on all through the day.”

SPINACH

Most cancers-fighting brokers: Glutathione, alpha lipoic acid, and the carotenoids beta carotene and lutein

Could assist struggle:Colon, prostate, abdomen, and breast cancers

There are about 90 publications thus far concerning spinach and most cancers with essentially the most encouraging outcomes famous in research specializing in breast and prostate cancers,” says Strattner. “It impacts most cancers cell survival and inhibits irritation.”

She suggests topping sandwiches and burgers with spinach, including leaves to omelets, or together with some strawberries and watermelon to a bowl of the leafy greens to sweeten-up the dish.

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