According to Department of Health, cancer currently ranks as the fifth major cause of mortality and morbidity in the Philippines. This fact simply means that more and more Filipinos die each day due to certain types of cancer. We all know how much of a burden it is to have cancer or to take care of someone who has it but due to our fast-paced era, we simply forget how to take care of ourselves more often than not. Technology nowadays is already considered a necessity while health-related activities or screening procedures have taken a back seat. As a result, cancer cases have skyrocketed to unprecedented levels over the years and health care costs have become a burden for so many countries. For this reason, it is crucial for everyone to foster positive health practices that will decrease one’s risk of having the deadly disease. In addition to active lifestyle, effective stress management and regular cancer screening, choosing the right food to eat can also bring outstanding benefits for you and your family. And if you’re going to choose the right food to consume, then let it be one of these 10 anti-cancer foods that have brought medical miracles over the years:
It’s strong flavor has made garlic a perfect addition to every delectable dish but beyond it’s crucial culinary role, garlic can also ward off cancer cells in the body. It can be an anti-cancer agent through two different ways: either by directly attacking cancer cells using one of its active ingredients (selenium, tryptophan) or by halting cancer cell multiplication by cutting off the blood supply towards tumors. There is no specific instruction regarding the ideal amount of garlic to consume but eating three to five cloves of fresh garlic per day, according to some medical experts, is already enough to kiss cancer risks goodbye.
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Cooking shows have tomato sauce as a staple ingredient for their different recipes and if you’re a chef wannabe, the term “lycopene” will probably ring a bell. You don’t have to learn basic science to grasp its meaning because “lycopene” is simply a natural component of tomato products that can help you kick certain types of cancer away. It protects your DNA from being attacked by carcinogenic substances and also serve as an antioxidant to keep yourself away from harmful free radicals. I don’t intend to promote any product but it has been scientifically proven that processed tomato products like tomato sauce have higher lycopene content. According to experts, 25 to 40 mg of lycopene is powerful enough to fight cancer.
3. Cruciferous vegetables (Broccoli, Cabbage, Cauliflower)
These vegetables are rich in fiber which acts like a sweeper in cleaning harmful chemicals and free radicals within our intestines. Our DNA, if destroyed by free radicals, might eventually mutate into cancer cells so its essential for us to eat the best foods that will guard us from these harmful substances. In addition to that, cruciferous vegetables also contain antioxidants that naturally bind with toxins found in liver and large intestine.
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4. Green tea
According to a research team from University of Southern California, drinking green tea regularly can significantly decrease one’s risk of developing breast cancer by 53%. As an effective anti-cancer drink, green tea contains antioxidants called catechins which can protect our body by fighting off free radicals or by directly attacking cancer cells. You can choose between black or green tea but according to medical experts, drinking two to three cups of green tea a day will give you a higher amount of catechins.
By simply eating wildly-caught fish like salmon, herring or mackerel a week, you can decrease your risk of developing certain types of cancer like breast, prostate or colon by an astounding 94%! This is due to the fact that oily fish naturally provides Omega-3 fatty acids, Vitamins A and D, three nutrients that have been proven effective in fighting off cancer.
Regardless if it’s Shiitake or button, mushrooms are rich in antioxidants and nutrients that can strengthen one’s immune defenses against infections and major types of cancers.
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I’ve used turmeric powder for quite a long time in cooking delicious curries and a specific Ivatan delicacy called “valenciana” that’s why when I learned that it contains anti-cancer properties, I was a little bit surprised. Well, don’t be shocked anymore because according to American Cancer Society, turmeric naturally contains curcumin, an antioxidant that helps to protect our cells from carcinogenic compounds and even kills tumors by shrinking them.
Like other plant products, carrots are a natural source of beta-carotene, a nutrient that converts itself into Vitamin A whenever the need arises. Vitamin A has long been known to shield our body from major types of fatal cancers.
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Moderate amounts of red wine or grape juice can help you build your arsenal against cancer. This is due to the fact that grapes or products derived from this fruit naturally contains resveratrol, an antioxidant that can either shrink cancer tumors or protect our body cells from destructive free radicals.
Beans like kidney beans are a perfect source of antioxidants as well. In addition to that, they can provide our body with a rich supply of fiber which will help us to get rid of various forms of free radicals and toxins.
Cancer is a traitor and anyone can be a victim. This is the reason why we have to do our part in battling this deadly disease. We can fight cancer by constantly educating ourselves about the do’s and don’ts of cancer prevention. Having a healthy lifestyle and being equipped with the warning signs of cancer can get a long way. Remember, health is wealth and before cancer can ruin our lives, let us be proactive and do all we can to have a cancer-free life.
Photo credit: http://www.ovca.org