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Part 1 of the “Are You Eating Cancer” series focused on foods that feed cancer. This article focuses on the foods that fight cancer. Currently, one out of every four people are getting cancer. A proactive approach to preventing, and even fighting cancer, can reduce your risk. Here are some guidelines that can help:
Eliminate the “FUEL” for Cancer Growth
Once a cancer cell develops, sugar is the primary source of energy for cancer cell growth. So, if you have cancer, you must starve the cancer of its fuel. This involves eating very little to no sugar/carbohydrates and instead focus on eating healthy fats and moderate amounts of high-quality protein. This is the foundation of the Ketogenic Diet to fight cancer.
Eat The “RAINBOW” of Vegetables
The wide array of colors in fruits and vegetables correlates to various nutrients and antioxidants that fight cancer. Eat the rainbow of colors every day, including purple, blue (blueberries), greens, yellow, orange (carrots) and red.
Eat The “SUPERFOODS”
These are foods that contain multiple disease-fighting nutrients and antioxidants. They include cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, kale, collard greens, watercress, arugula, turnips, rutabagas, radishes, and bok choy), berries, apples (organic), dark chocolate (at least 70%), raw cacao, and raw nuts.
Buy Organic Produce to Avoid Cancer-Causing Pesticides
Each year, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) publishes a list of the fruits and vegetables with the least amount of pesticides (The Clean 15), and the highest amount of pesticides (The Dirty Dozen). If you can’t afford to buy organic produce all the time, stick with the produce on the Clean 15 for the healthiest options.
Spice It Up!
Spices and herbs have the highest amounts of antioxidants to fight disease across all foods tested. Ginger and turmeric are anti-inflammatory. Curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric, has been shown to kill cancer cells in lab dishes and also slows the growth of the surviving cells. Curcumin has also been found to reduce the development of several forms of cancer in lab animals and shrink animal tumors.
Eat Wild Caught Fish and Grass-Fed, Pasture Raised Meat.
Farm-raised fish and factory-farmed animals are often fed food and grain they typically would not eat in nature. Grain-fed animals are inflamed and so are you when you eat them. Meat and fat from grass-fed and foraging animals have more omega-3 fats and less arachidonic acid which causes less inflammation in your body.
Eat Only Healthy Fat and Oils.
The oils and fats you consume is an important choice because very few of them prevent disease, while most actually promote disease. Here is a list of the healthy oils that you should include in your diet.
In addition to eating foods that fight cancer, here are several other steps you can take to reduce your risk of getting cancer:
Optimize Your Vitamin D Levels and Supplement with “The Basic 5.”
Vitamin D is the most powerful anti-cancer vitamin which helps fight and protect against many forms of cancer, including breast, colon, prostate, ovarian and pancreatic cancer. Getting vitamin D through sun exposure in the summer and supplementing with vitamin D3 is vital to fight cancer and other diseases. Blood levels should be between 50-80ng/dl.
Maintain Normal Body Weight
If you are overweight or obese, this is a serious risk factor for cancer. If you eat primarily the foods we have been talking about and eating less sugar and grain (bread, tortillas, pasta, etc.), you will begin shedding the pounds.
Exercise on a Regular Basis
Exercise helps protect against cancer! The best exercise plan incorporates cardiovascular, core strengthening, and overall strength training. Find a type of exercise you like and stay consistent.
Get Regular, Good Quality Sleep
Go to sleep and get up at the same time each day. It is best to get between 6-8 hours of sleep every night.
If you know the source, reduce and eliminate stress by either permanently removing yourself from the source or try changing the situation. Stress often occurs as a result of a strained relationship. Try mending the relationship by talking it out. There are situations when you may have to end a relationship, but it is important to “move on” and not carry the “emotional baggage” with you. Whether you mend or end a relationship, forgiveness and accepting a person for who they are can help you tremendously! The most effective tools to manage stress are exercise, meditation and other tools, such as Emotional Freedom Technique.
Avoid as Many Chemicals, Toxins, and Pollutants as Possible
This starts with tossing out your toxic household cleaners, soaps, personal hygiene products, air fresheners, bug sprays, lawn pesticides, insecticides, and replacing them with non-toxic alternatives.
Preventing cancer and other diseases starts with your lifestyle choices. If you follow these lifestyle habits, you will reduce your risk of developing cancer and increase your chances of beating cancer if you are currently fighting a cancer.