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Foods can help prevent prostate, other cancers

Published On: Jan 15 2013 01:56:37 PM CST
Updated On: Aug 22 2013 12:05:20 PM CDT
tomatoes on white background

iStock/MorePixels

By Judith Hurley, Pure Matters

Plant foods, which contain antioxidants, may help reduce your risk for many cancers.

Try to eat approximately 2 cups of fruit, 2½ cups of vegetables and at least six- to nine-ounce equivalents of grain per day, of which half should be whole grain. Be sure to make room on your plate for the following nutrition-packed foods.

Blueberries

These small fruits contain anthocyanins, the antioxidants that give blueberries, cherries, plums, red and purple grapes and red cabbage their color. Anthocyanins help neutralize cancer-causing substances and may help prevent gastrointestinal cancers.

Tasty tip: Freeze red or purple grapes and eat them frozen. Add blueberries or cherries to cereal, yogurt or pudding.

Cruciferous vegetables

Broccoli, cabbage, bok choy, cauliflower, chard, kale and brussels sprouts have substances that cause enzymes to be released into your system. These enzymes help break down chemicals that cause cancer and may slow early tumor growth.

Tasty tip: Add broccoli to salads and cabbage or chard to soups.

Orange foods

Beta-carotene is the pigment that colors pumpkins, carrots, acorn and winter squash, apricots, cantaloupe, mangos and sweet potatoes. It is also an antioxidant that helps prevent cancer cells from spreading.

Tasty tip: Use canned pumpkin puree as a savory soup base. Pack dried apricots and mangos for a portable, chewy, sweet snack.

Tomatoes

Lycopene makes tomatoes red. It is also an antioxidant that may help prevent bladder, breast, cervical, digestive tract, lung, prostate and skin cancers. Cooked tomatoes (in a little oil) provide more lycopene than raw tomatoes. Watermelon and pink grapefruit are other sources of lycopene.

Tasty tip: Try a refreshing grapefruit, guava and papaya salad or end a meal with a slice of watermelon.

Tea

Green tea contains catechins, which are antioxidants that may protect against colon, skin and stomach cancer. Black tea may help protect you, too.

Tasty tip: Iced or hot, tea is a healthy addition to any menu. Try chai, a fragrant Indian beverage of tea, milk and sweet spices.

Whole grains

Brown rice, whole-wheat pasta, bran cereal and other whole grains may help stop cancer from starting and slow tumor growth.

Tasty tip: Start your day with at least two servings of whole grains, such as a full bowl of oatmeal or bran flakes or two slices of whole-wheat toast.

Source: Pure Matters

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