October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and during this month emphasis is placed on raising money for breast cancer research. Advances have been made, like the identification of the BRCA-1 and BRCA-2 genes but there is always more to be done. There is one thing that is more important than research and raising funds - prevention!! Yep! PREVENTION! There are changes we can implement to protect ourselves and our loved ones from this cancer.
Diet and lifestyle are very important but too many they are also easy to overlook. A lot of my clients have the same complaint - ‘it is hard to eat right’. And it can be. In this city, we are often so busy that we forget to eat and then we choose unwisely because we are in a rush. Since it is so easy to make unwise choices when it comes to the food we eat, it is that much more important to learn how to choose well and choose the most nutritious foods above all others.
Choose these Cancer-Fighting Foods
- Beans and Lentils - are rich fiber, folic acid and lignans. A Harvard Nurse’s Study found that those who consume beans and lentils at least twice a week are 24% less likely to get breast cancer than those who consume these less than once a week. Aim for 1 cup, 3-4 times per week.
Cruciferous Vegetables - like cabbage, kale, cauliflower, broccoli, brussels sprouts, watercress, arugula are rich phytochemicals - sulforaphanes and endals - that are potent anti-breast cancer agents. Eat these raw, lightly stir-fried in coconut oil or lightly steamed for maximum benefits. Aim for 2-3 cups a day!
Oranges - rich in cancer fighting vitamin C and folic acid and provide every known class of anti-cancer phytochemicals. A great choice for a mid-afternoon snack.
Carotenoid-rich Veggies - like yellow and orange bell peppers, carrots, spinach, collards, sweet potatoes provide cancer protection. Light cooking increases the bio-availability of these powerful carotenoids. Mix these up with your cruciferous veggies!
Plums and Peaches - the antioxidants in organic plums and peaches rival those found in blueberries and may help kill breast cancer cells while keeping healthy cells intact. Snack on these to satisfy your sweet tooth!
Walnuts - may thwart the growth of breast cancer cells according to research found in the journal Nutrition and Cancer. Aim for 2 ounces a day.
Wild Salmon - is rich in Omega 3 fatty acids which help reduce inflammation, which is thought to contribute to breast cancer. Eat wild salmon or another cold-water fatty fish 2-3 times a week.
Parsley and Celery - are rich in a phytochemical, apigenin, which might actually inhibit cancer-cell growth - according to University of Missouri scientists. Garnish your meals with fresh chopped parsley and celery daily.
There is no magic solution to breast cancer but if a healthy diet can help keep you cancer free isn’t it worth the effort? According to Cheryl L. Rock, Ph. D., R.D., a University of California professor of family and preventative medicine “A woman can cut her chance of cancer by as much as two-thirds with good nutrition and weight management.” What are you waiting for?? Think Pink and protect your breasts by incorporating these foods into your daily routine!
Peach-Mango Chia Cacao Smoothie
1 cup organic peaches, frozen
1 cup mango, frozen
1 handful organic spinach
2 tbsp raw cacao powder
2 tbsp chia seeds
2 cups unsweetened almond milk
=>Blend well until desired consistency is achieved and enjoy!!
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