Scientific studies confirmed that some foods actually contribute to the development of different types of cancer and other groups of food can not only reduce cancer risks but can also prevent development of cancerous cells (anticancer diet) and increase survival rates. This is why most health experts recommend diet reducing cancer risks.
What means diet reducing cancer risks? Is it diet with some magic anticancer foods or it is just list of healthy foods? Answer is very simple – several types of food contain antioxidants (black grapes, tomato, cauliflower, broccoli, etc.) which fight cancer cells, some foods contain specific vitamins (vitamins D, B17, A, E) which can prevent cancer development and there are certain foods which trigger cancer development and feed cancer cells (sugar, saturated fats).
Diet reducing cancer risks include few changes in eating habits
Avoid fat food and exclude saturated fats
It is well known that cancerous cells “like” low density lipoproteins (LDLs) which stimulate the grow of “bad cells”. This is why you should avoid fat food.
Saturated fats (palm, palm kernel, coconut, cottonseed oils) can be more dangerous because hydrogenated fats (those that have been chemically changed from unsaturated to saturated fats) are potentially carcinogenic. Eating saturated fats could be even more cancer-causing that eating too much fat.
Exclude saturated fats (mainly fast foods) from your diet.
Limit your daily fat intake to no more than 15-20% of total food calories.
Good news is that there is also healthy fat which can be included in every day diet. Cancer researchers mentioned that oils high in omega 3 fatty acids can be even beneficial. It was noted that Eskimo women who have a high concentration of omega 3 fatty acids in their diet have lower frequency of breast cancer. Scientists suggested that omega 3 fatty acids could block estrogen effect on breast cells, thus lowering the risk of them becoming cancerous. Some experimental studies also show that fish-oil-supplemented (high in omega 3 fatty acids) reduce the frequency of colorectal cancers in animals.
Several studies confirmed that most of fresh fruits and vegetables contain anticancer properties (phytochemicals, antioxidants) that could help body fight cancer. Most experts agreed that eating more raw fruits and vegetables reduces all kinds of cancer risks.
Diet reducing cancer risks
According to recent research, fruits and vegetables contain five main properties which are naturally blocking agents against carcinogens – phenols, indols, flavones, cumines and isothiocyanates. Most powerful anticancer vegetables which can reduce your risks for cancer development are cruciferous vegetables – broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, mustard greens, kale and cauliflower. These vegetables not only boost your immune system but also block enzymes that draw carcinogens into healthy cells. Scientists estimate that eating lots of cruciferous vegetables could reduce your risks of breast and colon cancer approximately by 35-40%.
Keep in mind – antioxidants reduce cancer risks
Daily diet high in antioxidants can decrease cancer risks. Scientists discovered how antioxidants protect human body against cancer:
Antioxidants boost (strengthen) immune system – stronger immune system, less are possibilities for cancer development;
Antioxidants release very specific chemical called “tumor necrosis factor” which supports cancel cells’ suicide;
Antioxidants prevent free-radical reactions that can cause multiplication of cancerous cells as well as bowel contents to be carcinogenic;
Antioxidants prevent wrong faulty metabolism in the cell, which can predispose a cell to becoming carcinogenic;
Antioxidants protect the membrane of cells including intestinal cells.
Fresh fruits and vegetables are the main source of natural antioxidants – natural properties which can prevent different types of cancer as well as fight cancer cells.
Increase fiber use to reduce cancer risks
There is scientific evidence confirming links between high fiber diet and lower chances of colorectal cancer:
Fiber pushes and moves potential carcinogens through the intestines faster, decreasing the contact time between carcinogens and the intestinal wall;
Fiber is able to absorb bile acids, keeping them from acting on bacteria to produce fecapentanes, the cancerous substances that are formed by decaying foods within the colon;
Fiber promotes the growth of healthy bacteria in the intestines, which crowd out the undesirable bacteria that produce fecapentanes;
Fiber is able to bind estrogen hormones in the bowels, thereby lessening the estrogen effect in the cells of breast tissue – these can reduce risks for breast cancer development.
Replace red meat with seafood
There is the scientific evidence that risk of developing colon cancer correlated with the amount of animal fat in daily diet – the risk of colon cancer was 2.5 times higher in women who used to eat red meat (beef, pork, lamb) every day, as compared with those eating it less than once a month. Replacing red meat by fish, seafood or even chicken (without skin) an decrease cancer risks.
Disclaimer: It is strongly recommended to consult your doctor for professional advice. Above mentioned information and recommendations are just general and should be adapted to each person according to personal health indicators and status.