Cancer is a wide-spread disease that can impact just about everyone. It’s not just a disease that strikes the old. Young people can get it as well and it can come on suddenly, without any warning. That’s why it’s vital that you are doing absolutely everything you can to protect yourself against it.
Part of your protection plan should involve eating the right foods. Food does more than just taste great it nourishes the body and ensures that you are delivering nutrients that will help not only give you energy, but also protect you from various different diseases.
When it comes to cancer, certain foods stand out above others as ‘superfoods’ in a sense in that they offer extra protection to help you side-step this disease.
Does that mean you’ll never suffer from cancer? Unfortunately, it doesn’t. But it does mean that hopefully, your risk will be lower. That’s all you can do going forward.
So which foods should you be feasting on? Which will help you better manage your risk profile?
Let’s take a look.
1. Leafy Greens
If there’s one food you can almost always count on for being a good choice in your diet plan, leafy greens are it. It doesn’t matter if you are trying to combat cancer, improve your body weight, stabilize your blood glucose levels, or fight aging, leafy greens are a great food to have in place on your menu.
Some of the best sources of leafy greens to consume include spinach, kale, collard greens, arugula as well as bok choy. Spinach and kale tend to stand out as the clear winners here as far as overall nutrition is concerned, but any of these will be excellent choices if you can get them in.
Leafy greens contain glucosinolates, which contain antibacterial and antiviral properties while also helping to deactivate carcinogens that may be present in the body.
In essence, they’re going to promote the dying off of cancer cells, therefore allowing you to avoid tumor formation and metastasis1.
2. Cruciferous Vegetables
Leafy greens aren’t the only vegetables that earn top marks for being great cancer fighters. In addition to that, also consider cruciferous vegetables, which contain glutathione, which is the master antioxidant to the body2.
Antioxidants are important to consume as far as cancer-fighting goes because they help to neutralize the free radicals that can lead to cancer formation in the first place.
Good examples of cruciferous vegetables include broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts.
Next time you’re looking for a sweet treat to add to your day or you simply want something to top of your leafy greens that were noted above, try berries. Berries are loaded with antioxidants and other important vitamins and minerals that keep your immune system and body strong3.
Topping the list of some of the highest antioxidant containing berries include blueberries, raspberries, and strawberries. Cherries are also worth noting and great fruit to eat if you want to also promote better sleep quality since they have a naturally occurring source of melatonin.
Berries also possess anti-aging properties thanks to their stellar antioxidant profile, so if you are someone who is looking to defy the hands of time, that’s another reason to get this delicious fruit variety into your diet plan.
4. Orange Foods
If you want to play colors of the rainbow, start eating more orange foods – as long as it’s unprocessed orange foods (cheese dip doesn’t count!).
Naturally occurring orange foods contain high levels of phytochemicals, such as carotenoids that may help to boost immune function, assist with detoxification, and also promote better overall liver health. They’ll also work hard to fight cancer in the skin, eyes, and organs.
Good options here include sweet potatoes and carrots, however, oranges and orange bell peppers are also excellent choices.
5. Herbs And Spices
When thinking about which cancer-fighting foods you should eat, it’s important not to rule out the herbs and spices that are now available and what they can do to help promote better health and well-being.
Herbs and spices possess many health benefits and best of all they are completely calorie-free. Since excess body weight can be a risk factor for the development of cancer, anything that helps you control your body weight is also going to be a great thing.
One of the most notable spices to include often is turmeric, which contains the active compound curcumin, which provides the benefits that you’re seeking.
Curcumin can assist with decreasing overall tumor size and may also help to fight colon and breast cancer, while also helping to strengthen the immune system, reduce joint pain, and lower overall levels of inflammation in the body4.
Almost everyone can benefit from having turmeric in their diet plan, so start seeking out recipes today that will help you incorporate this spice into your diet plan.
Feeling like you just don’t know how to add turmeric to your diet plan? Here are some suggestions:
· Add it to scrambled eggs and frittatas
· Add it to roasted vegetables after cooking
· Stir it into cooked rice along with frozen peas and corn
· Sprinkle it onto greens, either raw or after being sautéed in a little olive oil
· Add it to your morning smoothie
· Prepare a tea with it
As you can see, there are many great ways to get turmeric into your diet plan so start experimenting and figure out which one is going to work best for you.
6. Probiotic Rich Yogurt
One thing that you should be doing with your health plan that few people are actually doing is making sure they’re getting sufficient levels of probiotics into their menu. Probiotics are the healthy bacteria that live within the gut and help you strengthen your immune system while also encouraging better digestion and assimilation of nutrients. In addition to this, they may also help to reduce your risk of suffering from colon cancer as well5.
Most of us currently do not have sufficient levels of probiotics in our menu and as such, we tend to fall short. Unless you are currently supplementing with a probiotic supplement, such as P3-OM, which is recommended for everyone, you aren’t meeting your needs.
The good news is that with the help of a supplement and a few smart foods, you can easily get your intake back to where it needs to be.
Probiotic-rich yogurt is a great place to start. Note that you do want to ensure that you purchase yogurt that says it contains live cultures of bacteria as most yogurts don’t. Another trick? Look for one that is not fruit-flavored. If there is added sugar to the yogurt, this is actually going to kill off the live bacteria, thus rendering it essentially useless.
You can also use kefir if you prefer it over yogurt, which can now typically be found in your local grocers dairy aisle as well. Once again, get unflavored for best results.
The great thing about adding more yogurt to your diet plan is that it will also help to provide a big dose of calcium, which will go a long way towards making your bones strong and healthy.
Many people aren’t getting sufficient calcium into their diet. As they get older this is one factor that is contributing to the rise in osteoporosis development.
Both nuts and seeds are excellent foods to have in your diet plan when you are on the hunt for a way to combat cancer. Chia seeds and flaxseeds are especially notable as they contain omega-3 fatty acids, which are going to help to reduce inflammation in the body and can help protect and defend against cancer formation6.
Other good choices include hemp seeds and walnuts, both of which also come with a dose of omega-3 fatty acids.
This said, your favorite nuts such as almonds, cashews, or hazelnuts are also good as they will help to control blood glucose levels, provide a healthy fat source for the body, and are important for strengthening the immune system as well.
8. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Another food that you’ll want to start adding more often in your cooking is extra virgin olive oil. The reason why this is so beneficial is that it can help to lower the total levels of inflammation in the body, which is important for keeping yourself disease-free.
While inflammation doesn’t necessarily cause cancer, it can certainly increase your risk of developing it. In addition to that, inflammation is often also present in many other disease states such as heart disease, diabetes, and arthritis.
If you are right now instead using refined vegetable oils or worse, hydrogenated oils in your cooking, these are without a doubt increasing your risk for cancer, so by swapping them out with some good extra virgin olive oil instead, you’ll go a long way towards supporting better overall health and longevity7.
Did you know that mushrooms can also help you fight off cancer? Some people shy away from this vegetable because they don’t like the thought of eating a fungus but the fact of the matter is that mushrooms are one of the best foods you can eat as far as combating cancer goes.
They are well-known to help boost your immune system and have been used traditionally for a long time to help fend off cancer as well as other diseases.
Note that the best mushrooms you can use however are cordyceps mushrooms, which typically are not found in your supermarket but instead in supplemental form. If you are very serious about combating cancer, check these out as a regular addition to your supplement regime.
10. Wild Caught Fatty Fish
Finally, the last of the foods that you’ll want to get into your diet plan if you’re hoping to combat cancer is wild-caught fatty varieties of fish. Think salmon, mackerel, and cod here.
These fish varieties are loaded with high-quality protein as well as omega-3 fatty acids, which we touched on above as being one of the best foods to help combat cancer formation.
You should ideally be eating fatty varieties of fish at least every week, if not twice per week, so if you currently aren’t, start making an effort to do so.
And on top of that, it’s also a good idea to pick yourself up a fish oil supplement as well so you can get a reliable source of omega-3 fatty acids into your diet plan daily. If you aren’t eating fatty fish or other sources of omega-3 fatty acids regularly, you should be. Because this will be vital to your health promotion plan.
… A Look At The Opposite End Of The Spectrum
Wondering what foods you should avoid if you want to decrease your cancer risk? The following items are known to be cancer-causing, so try and steer clear at all costs. They are going to do nothing to help better your position.
· Processed meats. Full of carcinogens due to the processing it goes through, you should avoid these at all costs. This means bacon, hot dogs, sausage, as well as certain deli meats.
· Anything that is heavily fried or burnt. This can lead to the development of a toxin called acrylamide, which is also found in cigarettes and is a known carcinogen to man. If you cook foods like bread, crackers, cakes, and potatoes too long and at very high temperatures, they start to form. If you ever see that food also has a burnt crust on it, stay clear. This crust is not safe to eat.
· Too much excess sugar can also make your risk of cancer shoot through the roof. This is especially the case if you’re consuming high fructose corn syrup. Be sure to read all food labels as sources of sugar can be lurking everywhere.
While there are other foods that won’t do your body any good in terms of the potential risks they have for cancer, these are the biggest ones that you need to be extra careful about.
So there you have some of the main foods you’ll want to add to your diet plan if you hope to combat cancer and put your best foot forward at staying disease free over the long-term.
Remember that nutrition changes are not a short-term solution. You need to eat right over the long-term, making diligent food choices each and every day. It’s to be expected that you’ll have the odd setback here and there, but you should be, for the most part, be eating healthy.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the best foods to kill cancer cells?
Some of the best foods include green tea, ginger, carrots, leafy greens, as well as turmeric.
Can cancer be reversed with diet?
It’s unlikely you can reverse cancer with diet alone if you are suffering from it. But eating a diet that helps prevent the cancer cells from spreading and encourages apoptosis can certainly help out.
What spice kills cancer cells?
Turmeric has been shown to be a very effective treatment in helping with combating cancer. It may help to kill certain types of cancer cells, assisting you with the healing powers you’re looking for.
What do cancer cells feed on?
Cancer cells will feed off foods that you should be avoiding in your diet plans such as rice, bread, pasta, potatoes, and anything sugary. Avoiding these if you have cancer will be a must.
What are the best vitamins for those who are suffering from cancer?
While it’s always best to get your nutrition from whole food sources, good vitamins and minerals that you should be including in your protocol are Coenzyme Q10, vitamin A, C, and E, along with selenium and folic acid. You can get these from a wide variety of foods, so look into those first.
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3. Kristo, Aleksandra, Dorothy Klimis-Zacas, and Angelos Sikalidis. “Protective role of dietary berries in cancer.” Antioxidants 5.4 (2016): 37
4. Kuttan, Ramadasan, P. C. Sudheeran, and C. D. Josph. “Turmeric and curcumin as topical agents in cancer therapy.” Tumori Journal 73.1 (1987): 29-31.
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