Breast cancer statistics continue to rise around the world, with nearly 300,000 new cases of breast cancer being diagnosed each year in the United States alone. It is one of the most common forms of cancer affecting women, second only to skin cancer. It is estimated that one in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some time in their lives. The numbers are staggering. While the survival rates for breast cancer continue to improve, the best medicine remains prevention. Reducing the risk of developing breast cancer begins with a healthy diet. There are a number of foods that have been shown to significantly lower a woman’s risk for breast cancer, and they should become a part of every smart woman’s diet.
Flax seed is rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, lignans, and fiber. Studies have shown that the nutrients found in flax seed help to protect breast tissue from forming cancerous cells. Flax seed can be purchased whole or ground, and can be added salads to provide a nutty crunch to a meal or snack.
Garlic is a natural miracle with a surprising number of health benefits. Whole garlic contains allium, a cancer fighting compound that has been proven to slow the growth of tumors and inhibit the colonization of cancerous cells. Studies have shown that garlic, as well as leeks, onions, scallions, and chives, can greatly reduce the risk of a number of different cancers, including breast cancer, colon, cancer, and prostate cancer. Raw garlic should be added to the diet, and as little as one whole clove a day can help to guard against cancer, but with garlic the more the better.
Brazil nuts are rich in selenium, fiber, and cancer fighting phytochemicals. They boost the immune system, help to fight inflammation, and prevent the formation and growth of cancerous tumors. A handful of Brazil nuts a day, taken as a snack or mixed into a salad, can help prevent breast cancer and colon cancer.
Like Brazil nuts, walnuts are a powerful tool in the prevention of breast cancer. Walnuts are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, and can deliver the antioxidants that the body needs to protect itself from the free radicals that can cause cancer. As little as an ounce of walnuts every day can help to protect a woman’s body from breast cancer. Make sure your walnuts as with all nuts and seeds are organic and fresh. Walnuts because of their high omega-3 content can become rancid and their taste becomes bitter.
Dark Green Leafy Vegetables
Dark green leafy vegetables, such as kale, collard greens and spinach, are a vital part of any cancer preventative diet. These life giving vegetables are chock full of cancer fighting nutrients, including vitamin B, chlorophyll, natural phytochemicals and fiber. All of which help to protect the body from a variety of common cancers, including breast cancer.
Cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts and cabbage, contain significant amounts of sulfurophane and indoles. These naturally occurring compounds help to regulate cell growth, and are instrumental in fighting a wide range of cancers, including lymphoma, prostate cancer, bladder cancer, and breast cancer.
Chilli peppers and Jalapeno peppers contain capsaicin. Capsaicin is the active component that makes hot peppers hot. But capsaicin does much more, it retards the growth rate of cancer cells and inhibits their ability to colonize and form tumors. Peppers are also rich in chlorophyll and carotenoids, both of which help to guard against the formation of cancerous cells. A taste for hot peppers can do more than spice up your meals, it can help you ward off breast cancer.
Breast cancer prevention begins with making some smart lifestyle choices that will reduce the risk of developing the disease. One of the most powerful tools in the fight against breast cancer is diet, and it is one area where every woman can take control of their lives and make a positive difference in their total health. The foods we have discussed should be a part of every woman’s cancer prevention arsenal.