The Best Cancer Phytochemicals

All fruits and vegetables contribute something valuable to your overall health. But some studies show a relationship between eating particular types of produce and a reduced risk of cancer.

Cruciferous Vegetables
Like broccoli, cruciferous vegetables contain sulforaphane, as well as other phytochemicals such as dithiolthiones. These compounds can work by triggering enzymes that may act to block carcinogenic damage to your cells’ DNA. Along with broccoli, cruciferous vegetables include cauliflower, kale, Brussel sprouts, cabbage, bok choy, collards, kohlrabi, mustard greens and turnip greens.

Garlic And Onions
The sulfur compounds in garlic and onions (allyl sulfides) are the active, possibly cancer-preventing component. They trigger enzymes that may act to excrete carcinogens from the body.

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Orange And Grapefruit Juice
Along with vitamin C and other nutrients, oranges and grapefruits (especially concentrated in juice form) contain flavonoids, which act as antioxidants and can inhibit cancer cell growth.

Soy foods are high in isoflavones, which block some hormonal activity in cells. Diets high in soy products have been associated with lower rates of cancers of the breast, endometrium and prostate. Soy can be found in soy beans, soy milk, tofu, misu, and some meat-substitute products like “vegetable burgers.”

Tomatoes And Tomato Sauce Tomatoes are high in the phytochemical lycopene, a powerful antioxidant. One study found that lycopene had an even more potent ability to stop cancer cells from proliferating than beta-carotene. A diet high in tomatoes, especially when cooked, and tomato sauce has been associated with decreased risk of cancers of the stomach, colon, and prostate.

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