When it comes to cancer prevention, you may already know that it’s important to eat more broccoli and tomatoes, drink more green tea, and incorporate flaxseeds into your diet. These foods are powerful cancer fighters, but there are other little-known warriors against the dreaded disease that can give your diet the anticancer boost you want.
Chaga mushrooms grow on birch trees in northern forests and have long been used for many health conditions in Asian and northern European traditional medicine. A study in the International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms found that chaga mushrooms inhibited cancer tumor growth.
Dandelion greens have many anticancer compounds, including alpha-carotene, alpha-lipoic acid, beta carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin. Research found that a tea made from dandelion leaves decreased the growth of breast cancer cells, while a tea made from the roots of the dandelion plant blocked the ability of cancer cells to invade healthy breast or prostate tissue.
Gingerroot has significant anticancer and tumor-destroying properties. Research in the International Journal of Preventive Medicine found that ginger may help treat breast, colorectal, gastric, liver, prostate, and skin cancers.
Microgreens are truly small but powerful. The miniature leaves can contain up to 40 times more anticancer nutrients such as vitamin C, carotenoids (beta carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin), and vitamin E than their mature counterparts.
In a study published in Hiroshima, Japan, researchers concluded that dietary supplementation with long-term fermented miso could exert cancer-preventive effects on lung cancer, while other research demonstrates miso’s protective effect against breast cancer.
A study in the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture found that parsley acts as an antioxidant that destroys free radicals before they damage cells, protects DNA from damage that can lead to cancer or other diseases, and inhibits the proliferation and migration of cancer cells in the body.
Pomegranates are a delicious and effective weapon against cancer. Early studies demonstrate the fruit and juice’s promise for inhibiting different types of cancer, including lung, colon, skin, breast, and prostate cancers and leukemia.
Not only is sauerkraut made from cabbage, one of the best anticancer foods, but research published found that probiotics, such as those found in naturally fermented sauerkraut with live cultures, may help prevent cancer.
Fucoidans, found in seaweed, have shown antitumor activity against different types of cancer, including lung cancer, melanoma, lymphoma, and breast cancer.
While you may think of turmeric as a delicious curry ingredient or brain health booster, its main compound curcumin shows promise against prostate and colon cancer as well.
Herbs and supplements for more support
As always, check with your health care practitioner before taking a new supplement.
- Green tea
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin D
- Vitamin E
Written by Michelle Schoffro Cook, PhD, DNM