Much has been said and written about the power of food in the prevention of cancer, and certainly good nutrition is one of the fundamentals of good health. However, what often gets overlooked when people discuss cancer fighting foods is the importance of choosing the right food combinations to maximize the effectiveness of a healthy diet. It is sometimes too easy to view cancer fighting foods in isolation, and to assume that if one simply adds more walnuts to one’s diet that will effectively prevent, or combat, cancer. But a balanced diet is just that, and it is important to realize that the foods we eat work in concert to provide our bodies with the health giving nutrients they need to thrive.
No Single Food Is A Star
No single food stuff is a miracle cure in and of itself. Once we accept this idea, we can better understand the misleading reports that are generated by conventional medicine and the pharmacological industry. For example, when researchers into natural cancer prevention assert that the Lycopene found in tomatoes is instrumental in the fight against cancer, conventional medicine tries to refute that research by claiming that they have tested Lycopene in the lab and the results are inconclusive. The problem is, they have isolated the Lycopene compound and simply tested it in a vacuum. In essence, they are saying, “We fed our subjects nothing but tomatoes and they don’t seem to be any healthier”.
By ignoring the importance of nutritional balance, conventional medicine is not taking into account functional and holistic approaches.
Nutritional supplements are a good way for people to augment their healthy diets, and to increase their intake of important vitamins and nutrients. However, they should never be seen as an alternative to a balanced diet. Again, because the nutrients are taken in isolation, they can lack much of their cancer fighting properties. This is why nutritionists always stress the importance of relying on whole foods as a source for vitamins, minerals and other life giving nutrients. Supplements can play a part in good nutrition, but they can never supersede an all natural, organic, plant based diet.
Some Examples of Cancer Fighting Food Combinations
Now that we’ve talked a bit about the importance of combining the right foods for the prevention and treatment of cancer, let’s look at a few key examples of cancer fighting food combos.
- Tomatoes and Broccoli – As we know, tomatoes are rich in Lycopene, an antioxidant that helps to prevent the formation of cancer causing free radicals. Broccoli contains glucosinolates, which help to flush carcinogens from the body. A recent study by the American Institute for Cancer Research International Research Conference demonstrated that test subjects given a diet of both tomatoes and broccoli showed a significantly reduced instance of cancerous tumors than subjects fed on only one of these vegetables.
- Brussels Sprouts and Broccoli – Both of these vegetables are rich in vitamin C and folate, which are instrumental in the prevention of cancer. They also both contain phytonutrients, crambene in the case of Brussels sprouts and indole-3-carbinol in the case of broccoli. These phytonutrients work together to prevent dangerous carcinogens from damaging otherwise healthy cells at the DNA level.
- Tomatoes and Fat – We’ve all been taught that fat is bad for us, but in reality the body does actually need a lot of “good”fat for optimal health. The Lycopene in tomatoes is fat soluble, and the body can’t absorb it without the presence of fat. A healthy combination would be a tomato salad with avocados and olive oil.
God made the living and raw food to supply everything we need to protect ourselves from disease, but it is important to understand that no single plant or vegetable holds the ultimate answer. How we combine our food is just as important as the food we choose to put on our table. We must learn to combine natural and organic sprouts, seeds, nuts and vegetables in a way that will maximize their health giving properties. Only then will we be in all that God has created us to be in physical health and do all that He has called us to do.