Cruciferous vegetables are ones that belong to the mustard family, and include cabbage, broccoli, bok choy, cauliflower, and kale. Scott explains that these vegetables help prevent precancerous cells from becoming malignant tumors, and they also debilitate the development of blood vessel systems that support tumor growth and survival. They also contain nutrients such as antioxidants, sulforaphane, and indole-3-carbinol that are helpful in converting unhealthy estrogens into healthy ones.
Berries such as blueberries, strawberries, and goji berries contain antioxidants that help eliminate carcinogens from the body, explains Scott. They also hinder the cancer cells' ability to continue to grow into their own blood vessel systems and are helpful in getting them to self-destruct.
Scott also informed us of the benefits of eating sea vegetables, such as seaweed and kombu, because they offer a broad range of minerals that support our health. With their 56 essential and trace minerals, they slow cancer growth and encourage cancer-cell death. They’re also great for stimulating the immune system and support the growth of white blood cells, which are essential in rejecting tumors and virally infected cells.
Scott tells us that certain studies have said that omega-3-rich foods such as walnuts, chia seeds, flax seeds, and fatty fish, are great for supporting breast health. They also reduce inflammation, which is often the cause of cancer cell growth and can damage healthy tissues.
Green tea is rich in an antioxidant called catechin, explains Scott. Catechin finds free radicals throughout the body that are harmful to DNA and cause cancer, and they reduce the growth of new blood vessels that are required for tumors to grow.
Aside from being incredibly flavorful, turmeric also contains an anti-inflammatory compound called curcumin, which inhibits the growth of cancer cells. Scott’s cooking tip for turmeric is to add a little black pepper to the dish it's in, as it aids the body in absorption of the compound.
This member of the Allium family protects the body’s cells from carcinogens and disrupts the metabolism of tumor cells. Other relatives of garlic such as onions, shallots, leeks, and chives, are also high in sulfur-containing phytochemicals and should not be overlooked, says Scott.
Whole grains such as brown rice, quinoa, oats, and millet are great for fighting cancer because they’re complex carbohydrates that are a great source of fiber. Scott explains that research has shown that a low fiber intake ups the risk for breast cancer, so whole grains are a great source for bulking up.