Modern times…. Pollution, unhealthy lifestyle, UV rays, lacking the quality of our food sources, chemicals… All possible risk factors for cell damage that may induce the development of several types of cancer.
Only recently one of my closest friends was diagnosed with cancer, and it blows our minds. Still can’t believe it though. I never made the connection that even, at the age of 28, cancer is lurking around the corner. Not only older people are affected and numbers of cancer patients are rising.
Eating the right foods can help you to protect your body against cancer and some may even help you in the killing process. So, therefore, I did some research into the best cancer-fighting foods!
A diet rich in fiber, fruit, and vegetables in combination exercise is the best way to fend off cancer.
Which Foods You Should Add On A Regular Basis To Your Diet
- Foods rich in phytochemicals like beans, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, and kale.
- Fiber, lutein, and carotenoid-rich food sources. Found in leafy greens like spinach, romaine lettuce, and collard greens.
- Foods containing high levels of antioxidants such as vitamin A, C, and E. They protect your body against the formation of free radicals which may prevent cancer. Examples are oranges, carrots, avocados, and apricots.
Because it is that important I made a list below of the top 13 cancer-fighting vegetables and fruits you should consider adding more to your diet.
Always pick your food sources wisely, go for organic if you can or wash your fruits and vegetables thoroughly to rinse off all pesticides and other chemicals.
ALSO READ: Going Organic Without Breaking The Bank
13 Best Cancer-fighting Foods
1. Soursop, Natural Cancer Killer
Well-known fruit in tropical regions such as Southeast Asia, the Caribbean, and Central America. High in carbohydrates (fructose), vitamin C, B1, and B2. Lately, soursop gained a lot of publicity in the western world due to the claim that its leaves have the potential to cure cancer. Researchers found a certain chemical that selectively kills cancer cells of various types of cancer. Meaning, only killing the harmful cancer cells and leaving the healthy body cells intact.
Grapes, especially red grapes, contain high levels of flavonoids. Those are strong antioxidants, they protect your body against damage done by free radicals. Studies show that those antioxidants are responsible for a strong anti-inflammatory effect and the possibility to reduce the risk of developing or stop the spreading of cancer in the body. Highest levels of those antioxidants are found in its skin, so make sure to eat that as well.
Kiwifruit contains high levels of vitamin C, a well-recognized antioxidant known for its cancer-preventing properties. Kiwifruit contains even more vitamin C than oranges. The yellow kiwifruit has even a higher vitamin C concentration than its more commonly known green brother. But that’s not all next to the high levels of vitamin C, kiwi fruit also contains vitamin E, folate, fiber and carotenoids, all cancer-fighting nutrients.
ALSO READ: Is Kiwi Skin Edible: To Peel Or Not To Peel?
4. Strawberries, little protectors
Strawberries, my favorite little protectors! They are very delicious and well-honored for their many health benefits. Going from defending the body against cancer or cardiovascular diseases to losing weight and improving the skin. High levels of quercetin, a phytonutrient, can induce cell death and may inhibit the proliferation of cancer cells. Actually, research shows that quercetin may play a protective role in the development of cancer at several stages in the process.
One of the world’s most consumed tropical fruit. Research shows its powerful medicinal properties. Their benefits are numerous, mangoes contain nutrients that clear the skin, promote eye health, stave off diabetes and prevent the formation and spread of cancer. Antioxidant polyphenols effectively target and eliminate harmful cancer cells.
All cruciferous veggies, like broccoli, cauliflower, kale, contain cancer-fighting properties. Broccoli has high levels of vitamin C, carotenoids, fiber, calcium and folate. But that’s not all, it contains large amounts of phytochemicals like isothiocyanates. Especially broccoli has larger amounts of sulforaphane, a compound known for its protective role and is able to flush out chemicals which may cause cancer. Research shows the more broccoli you add to your diet the better.
Scroll down for more cancer-fighting superfoods.
Tomatoes contain high levels of antioxidants such as lycopene, vitamin A, C and E, all helping your body to fight free radicals and prevent cancer from developing. The cancer-fighting substance in tomatoes and broccoli work best when paired together than when eaten alone
Not actually a fruit or vegetable but great cancer-fighting spice showing powerful health benefits. Turmeric has been used for thousands of years in Ayurvedic medicine as an antiseptic and antibacterial agent. But that’s not all, turmeric has high levels of powerful cancer-fighting polyphenol curcumin. Research shows that this substance may inhibit growth of several different types of cancer and may even induce apoptosis, or cell death, in cancer cells
Just like broccoli, watercress is a member of the cruciferous family. Wonderful leafy green, jam-packed with essential nutrients and disease-fighting antioxidants. One compound uniquely found in watercress, phenylethyl isothiocyanate may provide a strong protection against the growth and development of cancer cells.
Actually, all berries show anti-cancer properties. 2 compounds are responsible for all this, ellagic acid and anthocyanosides. Ellagic acid, mostly found in strawberries and raspberries, acts as a powerful antioxidant and slows down the production of cancer cells. Anthocyanosides, found in high levels in blueberries, is one of the most powerful antioxidants known to scientists and are well known for the prevention of all types of cancer.
Fig contains ingredients that can fight tumors, control cancer cells and inhibit protein synthesis. A derivate of benzaldehyde, found in figs, may be very effective at shrinking of tumors. Next to that they also contain high levels of vitamin A, C, calcium, magnesium, and potassium.
Studies show that several compounds presented in the papaya fruit may help to reduce the risk of developing certain types of cancer. Papaya contains a compound that is called isothiocyanates that may help us to prevent cancer. It eliminates potential carcinogens and enhances the tumor-suppressing proteins just like broccoli. Studies do show positive results to relief the side effects of cancer therapy such as difficulty when swallowing, mouth sores, boost the immune system and it helps your body to fight cancer.
One of the world’s most nutritious foods, low in calories and rich in vitamins and antioxidants. Research shows that some of the phytonutrients, such as flavonoids, presented in spinach may inhibit the destruction of DNA, cancer cell and tumor growth. Make sure to eat fresh spinach, they contain more of the healthy nutrients than when pre-processed and frozen.
As you can see there are a lot of foods that can help you to protect your body against cancer or help you in the fighting process by interfering with the growth or strengthening the defense mechanism to help your body in the fighting process.
Thanks for reading. I hope this information was helpful. Until next time!
Crazy cat lady, life and food lover, certified biologist, and holistic health coach.