| Article Summary:
Natural Ways To Combat 4 Types Of Cancer
With Cancer Awareness month underway, many people are reading up on the different kinds of cancers. Whether you've been touched with this disease yourself, have a loved one who has been affected, or prevention is just on your mind, understanding about the various forms of this disease and what can be done to prevent them is important.
Here are some of the major types of cancers and what you can do to put yourself in the best position to prevent and treat them with nutritional and supplemental strategies.
Conditions & Diseases Articles:
Good news for those who are concerned with breast cancer is recent studies are showing that there is no substantial association between
caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee and tea consumption and the risk of breast cancer in premenopausal women. So you can still have your morning cup of coffee without worry that you're increasing your risk for this disease.
Secondly, those who consume plenty of cruciferous vegetables including broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale, brussel sprouts, bok choy, and collard greens, also show a reduced risk of breast cancer, so make sure you are eating as much of these as possible.
The reason these vegetables are so beneficial is because they seem to shift the estrogen
metabolism in the body, inhibiting the growth of cancerous cells.
You will also want to try and increase your consumption of cold water fish such as wild salmon, trout, herring, and mackerel, as well as eating modest amounts of flaxseeds, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, and soybeans to help increase your intake of omega-3 fatty acids.
One important thing to note is that the common thought that alcohol intake can reduce the risk of breast cancer isn't necessarily true. For women who are in their fifties, studies have demonstrated that one drink per day will actually increase the risk for breast cancer so women in this age range will really want to watch out.
A drink every now and then should be okay, but daily consumption isn't something that's recommended.
Finally, you may want to consider supplementing with melatonin, the supplement that helps to regulate the body's circadian rhythm and sleep patterns, as studies have suggested that individuals who currently suffering from low levels of melatonin are at a higher risk for developing breast cancer.
When it comes to preventing colon cancer, two specific supplements seem to be particularly beneficial. Studies have shown that the combination of
lycopene and eicosapentaenoic acid together help to inhibit the proliferation of colon cancer cells.
So, you can either supplement with each of these together, or focus on eating tomatoes and fish together, which provide both of these nutrients.
Those who follow Mediterranean diets tend to show a decreased risk of colon cancer as well, therefore following the strategies of this diet could provide beneficial. Mediterranean diets focus more on eating vegetables, whole grains, fruits, fish, and olive oil, and those following this type of diet do avoid all high-fat
meat and heavily processed foods.
Having a higher consumption of dietary fiber will also help keep a healthy colon, which is further proof of the importance of plenty of fruits and vegetables.
A final addition you'll want to add to your diet is supplemental
selenium. The Nutritional Prevention of Cancer ran a study that gave randomized patients 200 mcg/day of selenium while other subjects received a placebo. At the end of the study, those who were receiving the supplement reduced the incidence of colon cancer by 25%, proving that this is a very beneficial supplement to add to your daily regime.
One type of cancer that many men are growing more concerned about is prostate cancer. While age, race, and family history will all affect your chances of getting prostate cancer, and are factors that are harder to control, your nutritional intake is one thing you can control, hence something you should be taking control over.
One of the first recommendations for those who are concerned with this cancer is to increase their intake of lycopene, which is a chemical that occurs naturally in foods such as tomatoes, watermelons, grapefruits, papaya, and guava. This antioxidant has shown to help protect the body against the development of prostate cancer.
As tomatoes do tend to be richest in this important nutrient, a very good approach is to try and consume at least two servings of tomato based sauce a week.
After that, another recommendation is to bump up your intake of cruciferous vegetables as they contain a compound called sulforaphane, which aids in the repair of any cancer-causing substances in the body.
For example, topping some steamed broccoli and cauliflower with some fresh tomato sauce as a side to your
protein source for your meal would be an excellent way to help combat this disease.
Looking over to the supplement side of things, adding a beta-carotene supplement for those who already have low levels in their blood will also decrease the risk of developing prostate cancer, as will adding a vitamin E supplement if you are currently a smoker.
Finally, the last cancer that you should consider with your preventative nutritional and supplemental strategies is bladder cancer.
Again, the increased consumption of cruciferous vegetables should really be stressed as they will help reduce the rates of bladder cancer as well. One note worth mentioning though is many studies have demonstrated that they are very effective when eaten raw, so try as much as possible to incorporate at least some raw vegetables in your diet on a regular basis.
The second thing you can do is bump up your intake of
selenium, either through the consumption of dietary sources such as brazil nuts, mixed nuts, or fish, or take a supplement to help you meet your needs.
Finally, being sure you are taking in an appropriate fluid intake each day will go a long ways to helping reduce your chances of bladder cancer, as the clean water will help to cleanse the body, particularly the bladder.
So, be sure you are looking after your nutrition if cancer prevention is a concern for you. While you definitely do need to seek proper medical help if you suspect you have cancer and get proper treatments if diagnosed, taking steps to optimize your nutrition and supplement regime will put you one step further in the fight against this deadly disease.
- Ambrosone, BC. Et al. (2008) Consumption of raw cruciferous vegetables is inversely associated with bladder cancer risk. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. Apr; 17(4):938-44.
- Alberts, DS. (2008) The nutritional prevention of cancer: 400 mcg per day selenium treatment. Nutr. Cancer. Mar-Apr; 60(2):155-63.
- Cho HJ, et al. (2008) Concomitant supplementation of lycopene and eicosapentaenoic acid inhibits the proliferation of human colon cancer cells. J Nutr Biochem. Aug 15.
- Ganmaa, D. et al. (2008). Coffee, tea, caffeine and risk of breast cancer: a 22-year follow-up. Int J Cancer. 1;122(9):2071-6.
- Schernhammer, EC. Hankinson, SE. Urinary melatonin levels and breast cancer risk. J Nat. Cancer Inst. (2005) 97(14): 1064-1087.
- Tjonneland, A. et al. Lifetime alcohol consumption and postmenopausal breast cancer ate in Denmark: a prospective cohort study. J Nutr. 2004; 134(1):173-178.