Carotenoids Reduce Breast Cancer Recurrence

Carotenoids Reduce Breast Cancer Recurrence

Eating foods that contain carotenoids increases blood levels of these antioxidants, which provide protection against breast cancer.  In a study of over 1,500 women previously treated for early-stage breast cancer, those with the highest plasma carotenoid concentrations (a marker of fruit and vegetable intake) had the lowest rates of breast cancer recurrence.

Eating foods such as carrots, bok choy, dark leafy greens, pumpkin, carrots, squash, and sweet potatoes can help you keep your carotenoid levels up.

Aim for 1/2 cup serving each day.

Turnip Carotenoids for Breast Cancer

Turnips contain antioxidant carotenoids linked to low breast cancer risk.

A Chinese study of 3,000 women found that those who consumed the highest amount of carotenoid vegetables, such as turnips, had the lowest risk of breast cancer. Carotenoid compounds act as antioxidants supporting immune function, reducing inflammation, as well as fungal and bacterial growth.

Roasted turnips are easy to make. Slice turnips and toss with tamari, olive oil and herbs, such as basil, rosemary,Roasted Turnipsand sage and then roasted in the oven until soft and golden brown.

Trans Fats and Breast Cancer

Trans fats or ‘trans fatty acids’ are linked to higher rates of breast cancer. In a European study, the concentration of trans fats stored in body fat was associated with a greater incidence of breast cancer. Research suggests that this may be especially important to reduce breast cancer risk in those who are postmenopausal.

Trans fats have been structurally altered by a process called hydrogenation to stay solid at room temperature. Packaged baked products such as cookies, cakes and donuts are some of the worst culprits. Also any fatty foods that have been cooked in high heat may have altered fats, such as deep fat fried foods, charred meats, and many grilled foods.

Transfat_bigAvoid trans fats. Scan your food labels for the terms ‘partially hydrogenated’ and ‘hydrogenated’ oils.

Monounsaturated fats are healthier and safer for those at risk for breast cancer, such as extra virgin olive oil, walnut oil, sunflower oil, almond oil, hemp oil, and avocado oil.

Lycopene for Breast Cancer Prevention

TomatoesLycopene, an antioxidant carotenoid found in tomatoes, is a powerful anticancer nutrient that can reduce pre-cancerous cells that lead to breast tumors. This nutrient reduces free radicals in the body which are a precursor of cancerous cells. By neutralizing the free radicals,  lycopene not only provides protection from developing cancer but also has the ability to reduce tumor growth.

Researchers have found that dietary lycopene, which is from whole foods rather than supplements, reduced cellular markers of oxidative stress in women with existing breast cancer.

This is promising research as it suggests that eating foods containing lycopene frequently can provide protection against breast cancer development as well as help reduce cancerous cells.


Sage is Breast Cancer Protective

Sage (fresh or dried) is rich in polyphenol antioxidants.

Diets high in antioxidants can reduce cellular damage caused by oxidative stress. Researchers found levels of free radicals (which can lead to the formation of cancerous cells) were lower in women who ate a diet including herbs (rosemary, sage, and basil), and grape seed extract.Sage

Combine herbs such as basil, rosemary and sage and aim for a tablespoon per day of fresh herbs or 1 teaspoon per day of dried herbs.