An Abundant LifeStyle - Your Guide to Health and Nutrition
Best Cancer Fighting Foods
The National Cancer Institute estimates that roughly one-third of all cancer deaths may be diet
related. What you eat can hurt you, but it can also help you. Many of the common foods found in
grocery stores or organic markets contain cancer-fighting properties, from the antioxidants that
neutralize the damage caused by free radicals to the powerful phytochemicals that scientists
are just beginning to explore. There isn't a single element in a particular food that does all the
work: The best thing to do is eat a variety of foods.
The following foods have the ability to help stave off cancer and some can even help inhibit
cancer cell growth or reduce tumor size.
Avocados are rich in glutathione, a powerful antioxidant that attacks free radicals in the body
by blocking intestinal absorption of certain fats. They supply more potassium than bananas
and are a strong source of beta-carotene. Avocados may also be useful in treating viral
hepatitis, a cause of liver cancer.
Broccoli contains a chemical component called indole-3-carbinol that can combat breast
cancer by converting a cancer-promoting estrogen into a more protective variety. Broccoli,
especially sprouts, also have the phytochemical sulforaphane, a product of glucoraphanin -
believed to aid in preventing colon and rectal cancer. Two antioxidants in broccoli, lutein and
zeaxanthin, may help decrease prostate and other cancers
Garlic has immune-enhancing allium compounds (dialyl sultides) that increase the activity of
immune cells which fight cancer and indirectly help break down cancer causing substances.
They also help block carcinogens from entering cells and slow tumor development. Diallyl
sulfide, a component of garlic oil, has been shown to render carcinogens in the liver inactive.
According to a report in the October 2000 issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition,
people who consume raw or cooked garlic regularly face about half the risk of stomach
cancer and two-thirds the risk of colorectal cancer as people who eat little or none.
Blueberries are one of the most well-known and strongest of the cancer fighting foods. They
.contain powerful antioxidants known as anthocyanosides, which are believed to be helpful in
preventing all types of cancer.
Strawberries and Raspberries contain large doses of the cancer-fighting antioxidant ellagic
acid believed to help prevent skin, bladder, lung, and breast cancers, both by acting as an
antioxidant and by slowing the reproduction of cancer cells.
Carrots contain beta carotene, which may help reduce a wide range of cancers including
lung, mouth, throat, stomach, intestine, bladder, prostate and breast. A substance called
falcarinol that is found in carrots has been found to reduce the risk of cancer (according to
Danish Institute of Agricultural Sciences (DIAS). This substance is a polyacethylen, however,
so it is important not to cook the carrots.
Chili peppers and jalapenos contain capsaicin, which may neutralize certain cancer-causing
substances (nitrosamines) and may help prevent cancers such as stomach cancer.
Figs have a derivative of benzaldehyde which may be effective at shrinking tumors, t In
addition, the U.S. Department of Agriculture says figs, which contain vitamins A and C, and
calcium, magnesium and potassium, may curtail appetite and improve weight-loss efforts.
Fig juice is also a potent bacteria killer in test-tube studies.
Flax contains lignans, which may have an antioxidant effect and block or suppress cancerous
changes. Flax is also high in omega-3 fatty acids, which protect against colon cancer and
Grapefruits and other citrus fruits contain monoterpenes, believed to help prevent cancer by
sweeping carcinogens out of the body. Grapefruit may inhibit the proliferation of breast-cancer
cells in vitro. They also contains vitamin C, beta-carotene, and folic acid.
Kale has indoles, nitrogen compounds which may help stop the conversion of certain lesions
to cancerous cells in estrogen-sensitive tissues. In addition, isothiocyanates, phytochemicals
found in kale, are thought to suppress tumor growth and block cancer-causing substances
from reaching their targets
Mushrooms - a number of mushrooms that appear to help the body fight cancer and build the
immune system - Shiitake, maitake, reishi, Agaricus blazei Murill, and Coriolus Versicolor.
These mushrooms contain polysaccharides, especially Lentinan, powerful compounds that
help in building immunity. They are a source of Beta Glucan. They also have the protein lectin,
which attacks cancerous cells and prevents them from multiplying.
Papaya contains vitamin C which works as an antioxidant and may also reduce absorption of
cancer-causing nitrosamines from the soil or processed foods. Papaya contains folacin (also
known as folic acid), which has been shown to minimize cervical dysplasia and certain
Red Wine has polyphenols that may protect against various types of cancer. Polyphenols are
potent antioxidants, compounds that help neutralize disease-causing free radicals.
Resveratrol, which is found in grape skins. appears to inhibit cell proliferation and can help
prevent cancer. It should be used in moderation, as heavy consumption will negate the
benefits and cause liver damage..
Seaweed, kelp and other sea vegetables contain beta-carotene, protein, vitamin B12, fiber,
and chlorophyll, as well as chlorophylones - important fatty acids that may help in the fight
against breast cancer. Many sea vegetables also have high concentrations of the minerals
potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron, and iodine.
Green Tea contains antioxidants known as polyphenols (catechins) which appear to prevent
cancer cells from dividing
Tomatoes contain lycopene, an antioxidant that attacks roaming oxygen molecules, known as
free radicals, that are suspected of triggering cancer. Orange varieties provide more lycopene
Sweet potatoes contain many anticancer properties, including beta-carotene, which may
protect DNA in the cell nucleus from cancer-causing chemicals outside the nuclear
Soy foods are high in phytoestrogens and isoflavones, which block some hormonal activity in
cells. Diets high in soy products have been associated with lower rates of cancers of the
breast, endometrium and prostate.
Turmeric (a member of the ginger family) has many medicinal properties. Its active ingredient
is curcumin and it possesses numerous anti-cancer properties.
Rosemary may help increase the activity of detoxification enzymes. An extract of rosemary,
termed carnosol, has inhibited the development of both breast and skin tumors in animals.
Rosemary can be used as a seasoning. It can also be consumed as a tea:
Tapioca is derived from the cassava plant and is one of the many plants that manufactures
cyanide for its protection against predators and diseases.
Licorice Root has a chemical, glycyrrhizin, that blocks a component of testosterone and
therefore may help prevent the growth of prostate cancer. Excessive amounts can lead to
elevated blood pressure.
|Foods That Combat Cancer:
The Nutritional Way to Wellness
|by Maggie Greenwood-Robinson
|The anticancer diet is the exact
opposite of the typical North
American meal: mostly colorful
vegetables and legumes, plus
unsaturated fats (olive, canola,
or flaxseed oils), garlic, herbs,
|Top 5 Foods to Avoid
Saturated and hydrogenated fat
are solid at room temperature.
Both are bad for your heart and
increase risk for cancer. Regular
consumption of saturated fat
raises both total and LDL ("bad")
cholesterol; trans fat may act like
saturated fats in the body -- by
raising LDL -- but they also lower
HDL ("good") cholesterol.
Whole milk, butter, cheese, ice
cream, red meat, and coconuts
are rich in saturated fat.
A tiny amount of trans fat occurs
naturally in meat, It is found
mainly in margarines and
Avoid "partially hydrogenated" oils.
Some meats packed in
cellophane are processed with
substances linked to colon,
stomach and other cancers -
especially sodium nitrate.
Frequent consumption of
processed and red meat is
associated with higher rates of
cancer. Avoid bacon, sausages,
breakfast meats, pepperoni, hot
dogs and luncheon meats;
Burnt Meat: Don't char or burn
meat or poultry on the grill, which
may also increase cancer risk.
Well-done or charred meats
increase your exposure to
chemicals created when high
temps break down an amino acid
in meats. Fats dripping onto coals
create more chemicals in smoke
Too Much Alcohol. Moderate
consumption of alcohol may be
healthy for your heart and
promote immunity. Consistently
overdoing alcohol, increases risk
for many cancers, including liver
and some digestive cancers.
Breast cancer risk increases with
increased alcohol consumption.
Sugary Soda: Some research
links soda and esophageal
cancer, Diet soda's artificial
sweeteners, additives and
preservatives also displace
Live an abundant lifestyle: Diet and nutrition guide to a healthy lifestyle, wwight management and whole body wellness