Before discussing Anticancer Foods a.k.a cancer-fighting foods, let us take a deep dive to understand what is this disease and what can be done to prevent it.
What is Cancer?
Cancer is characterized by the development of abnormal cells in a particular area or different parts of the body that multiply uncontrollably, and these cells then infiltrate healthy body tissues and other vital organs and impact their normal function, ultimately resulting in death.
Affected cells can spread throughout the body over a short period spanning from months to years. Further, these abnormal cells form lumps, known as tumors.
Causes of Cancer
The origins of this disease can be divided into two factors, i.e., internal and external.
Internal factors majorly include genetics, weak immune system, obesity, hormone disorders, Infected Blood Transfusion, etc.
Whereas external factors include exposure to chemicals, radiation, smoking (Active as well as Passive), Sun Exposure, Pollution, Industrial Toxins, Infections such as hepatitis, HPV, and HIV, etc.
Is Cancer widespread?
Being the leading cause of unnatural deaths in the World, the cases of the stomach (gastroesophageal) breast, pancreatic, liver, and kidney cancer patients, have been increasing dramatically and over a million new cases are diagnosed each year.
Anyone can get affected by this disease at any age, but the risk goes up as we age and nearly 50 percent of cancers are diagnosed in people over 50 years of age.
Is there a Cure for Cancer?
While there is not a potential cure yet, significant research and development are going in this area to find a treatment for this disease using alternative therapies, anticancer diet and medicine apart from using conventional therapies like chemotherapy, radiation, and hormone therapy.
It is anticipated that more than half of all cancer deaths can be prevented and treated by Lifestyle Changes.
A healthy lifestyle can act as a defense barrier against chronic diseases and improve the quality of life of every individual who follows it.
I am hoping this article will inspire many of us to live a healthy lifestyle and adopt affirmative measures to prevent and fight this disease naturally and efficiently.
Let’s Aim for a Cancer Free World!
A healthy diet is directly linked to our overall well-being whereas harmful dietary habits put a negative impact on our health.
To avoid such chronic diseases, one should eat a lot of fresh vegetables and fruits including whole grains, pulses, food rich in antioxidants and avoid intake of red meat, processed food, and Sugar and should limit alcohol intake.
Sugar intake is not directly linked to increasing the risk of getting cancer, but refined sugar and carbonated sugary drinks lead to obesity, which leads to obesity and a weaker immune system that may lead to it.
There are numerous potent foods that we’re going to explore in more detail yet these 13 foods and supplements are a terrific place to begin. Readily available year-round, economical, and very easy to find at your neighborhood store, these foods are great to start a healthy regimen.
Top Cancer-Fighting Foods, Fruits, and Herbs
1: Cruciferous Vegetables
All Cruciferous Vegetables including Broccoli, Cauliflower, Cabbage, and Kale, are considered very good for fighting and preventing this disease.
They contain a compound called sulforaphane, which is believed to boost the production of the body’s protective enzymes and help flush out carcinogens. Cruciferous Vegetables also include other active compounds such as glucosinolates and indole-3 carbinol.
2: Berries – Strawberries, Goji Berries, Blueberry
All Berries have made their place amongst Superfoods and are one of the most abundant sources of potent antioxidants and essential nutrients, which help neutralize free radicals in the body that are responsible for cell damage.
Excess cell damage is the leading cause of many types of cancers and other chronic disease and fastens the process of aging in humans. The main phytochemicals and antioxidants found in berries can thwart existing cancer cells and slow down the growth and multiplication of new ones.
3: Seeds and Nuts
Walnuts, Almonds, Brazil nuts, Peanuts, Cashews, Flax seeds, Chia seeds, Pumpkin seeds, Hemp seeds, and, Sunflower seeds are all excellent examples of healthy nuts and seeds.
If you eat a handful of nuts and seeds daily, you are doing a great job where your health is concerned. Nuts and seeds provide immense health benefits and boost your immune system dramatically. All nuts and seeds are healthy and possess strong anti-aging properties. They are an excellent natural source of vitamins, minerals, protein, omega -3 fatty acids, and fiber.
Walnuts contain ellagic acid and have been shown to block estrogen receptors in breast cancer cells. Consuming nuts also seems to lower the risk of developing diabetes, which may further reduce the risk of developing pancreatic cancer.
Flax seeds contain lignans, which have antioxidants that are found to help in neutralizing or arresting the growth of cancer cells, especially in breast cancer. There is growing evidence that nuts and seeds reduce the risk for several types of cancer but remember they are high in calories, so don’t overdo it.
4: Green Vegetables
Dark leafy green vegetables are considered the main ingredient of good health. According to the American Institute of Cancer research, dark green leafy vegetables have a wide range of carotenoids such lutein and zeaxanthin, along with saponins and flavonoids that prevent cancer by acting as potent antioxidants and look out for potentially dangerous free radicals and neutralize them.
5: Black and Herbal Green Tea
Some studies suggest that consumption of both Black and Green tea/ Herbal Tea reduces the risk of colon, breast, ovary, and lung cancer. The antioxidants (catechins) in tea leaves can forage for free radicals in the body and neutralize them.
6: Healthy Unrefined Oils
Unrefined oils such as coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, Flaxseed, Sesame and Fish oil can help improve the immune system. They also have Omega-3 fatty acids that can help nourish the cells in your body and keep them healthy and prevent oxidation.
Mushrooms have been used in ancient medicines for thousands of years. Studies conducted on Mushrooms have shown their ability to fight and prevent certain types of cancers. They are known to enhance the body’s immune system. Patients take mushroom extracts alongside chemotherapy and radiation therapy to maximize its benefits and to reduce their side effects.
8: Organically grown Fruits
Bright colored organically grown fruits carry abundant phytochemicals that are full of carotenoid antioxidants and other essential nutrients. Watermelon, pomegranate, cherries, strawberries, apples, raspberries, and grapefruit are some great examples of nutritious fruits.
9: Organic Protein
Organically derived protein from Wild Caught Fish, Meats, Moringa, Beans, Legumes, dairy products, and Lentils are amongst the best options to fight and prevent dreaded disease as abundant Protein found in them plays a vital role in is building and repairing body tissues.
10: Fermented Foods
There are trillions of microorganisms that live in our body. Most of them live in our gut or digestive system. These “good bacteria” living in our gut contribute to digestion, help improves immunity and is highly essential to maintaining our health and our body’s ability to fight disease. Fermented foods are rich in probiotics and eating fermented food is a sure way to improve immunity and help digestion. Food like Yogurt is abundant in probiotics
11: Spices & Herbs
Turmeric, which contains the active ingredient curcumin which is the most researched and potent tool to thwart and prevent cancer. Similarly, herbs and spices like Garlic, Basil, Ginger, Oregano, Black and Cayenne Pepper, Parsley have shown to possess potent cancer-fighting properties.
Cultured milk items like Curd, Cheese, Butter Milk, Kefir are a rich source of probiotics, which maintains and balances intestinal microflora and enhance immunity. Healthy intestines back over 80 percent of your body immune system, so it’s not a surprise that probiotic foods and supplements can stop cancer development and facilitate healthy body cells.
13: Vitamin D
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that acts likewise to a hormone in our bodies that promotes calcium absorption by the bones and is responsible for critical body functions, and its deficiency invites numerous chronic diseases including various types of Cancers.
The most effective means to naturally get sufficient vitamin D is through direct exposure to the sunlight, although eating specific vitamin D-rich foods and supplements is also a viable option.
Scientific research shows that vitamin D protects our body against cancer cells when consumed in appropriate doses. If you want to avoid too much of sun exposure, it is advised to take an oral supplement containing around 5,000 to 10,000 IUs of Vitamin D3 on a daily basis or 60,000 IU on a weekly basis.
Apart from Including these healthy foods in your diet, it is advisable to exercise, do meditation, practice Yoga and keep your self physically active.