It seems that far too frequently we hear the sad news about a friend, relative or acquaintance getting the dreaded diagnosis of cancer. Many of us may not admit it, but for some it is a worry that is constantly in the back of our minds that the same thing could happen to us.
While there are many lifestyle habits that can contribute to a greater risk of getting some type of cancer, there are also foods and supplements that have been scientifically proven that can reduce that risk if we consume or take them regularly. Let’s look at five of those foods and supplements that we should consider adding to our diet and regimen.
Garlic is one of those foods that many people don’t enjoy because of the odor on their breath that it causes after eating it. However, clinical studies are proving that this food has some amazing benefits when eaten regularly. Several clinical studies that have been published in peer reviewed medical journals show that garlic contains compounds that can arrest and stop breast cancer cells from reproducing. As well, there is evidence that garlic’s compounds can reduce the risk of other cancers as well, including lung cancer.
Sailing ships in the 18th and 19th centuries would often stock up on sauerkraut and made their crews eat it every day. This saved many sailors from developing scurvy on long voyages. At the time, no one knew why eating sauerkraut helped to prevent scurvy but today we know it is because of the Vitamin C content that is contained in the pickled cabbage.
When cabbage is fermented into sauerkraut</A,> other compounds are created during the process. These compounds, called isothiocyanates, have been shown to be helpful in preventing cancer.
Recently, The Ohio State University published the results of a study that involved people eating an apple a day. They were astonished that after just one month, participants who ate an average apple every day had their risk of hardening of the arteries reduced by forty percent!
In addition to being able to lower oxidized LDL, apples also have compounds that are cancer preventative. Apples are high in triterpenoids which are known to lower the risk of breast and lung cancer.
Vitamin C is an antioxidant and maintaining minimum amounts in our bodies is vital for health. Without Vitamin C in our diet, we would get scurvy, a horrible disease which would cause our bodies to simply waste away.
There is plenty of evidence now that supplementing with Vitamin C, even if we are getting the recommended dietary allowance (RDA), may have cancer prevention benefits. If you smoke, you especially want to make sure you are getting more Vitamin C into your body than the RDA. Supplementing with 500 mg per day of Vitamin C from ascorbic acid will likely ensure you are getting enough.
Colon cancer continues to be a major concern in North America and medical authorities are recommending that adults over the age of 50 be screened for colon cancer every 5 years.
In 2003, the University of Minnesota discovered that gingerol may reduce or prevent the growth of cancer cells in the colon. Gingerol is a major component of ginger. If you don’t eat a lot of ginger, it is available as a supplement in the form of capsules at most health food stores.
Even though cancer continues to be a major concern, there are some things we can make sure we eat or get enough of on a regular basis to lower our risk of hearing a diagnosis of cancer someday. These five foods and supplements can easily be a part of your regular diet!
About the Author
Jen McCarthy has enjoyed studying nutrition for over 20 years and stays on top of the latest scientific findings about food and supplements so that she can provide up to date consulting and guidance to others. She is a frequent contributor to Healthy, Happy, Beautiful.