Know About the Foods that Prevent Cancer Appropriately

icon-blog By -Dr. Kanika Sharma
icon-blog By -January 11, 2024
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Know About the Foods that Prevent Cancer Appropriately

The role of diet in cancer management is crucial as it serves as a source of physiologically functional components. Around 30 to 40 percent of all cancers are believed to be preventable through lifestyle and dietary adjustments alone. Factors like obesity, consumption of nutrient-poor foods rich in concentrated sugars and refined flour (leading to impaired glucose metabolism and diabetes), low fiber intake, red meat consumption, and an imbalance of omega-3 and omega-6 fats contribute to an elevated risk of cancer. 

Incorporating flax seed, particularly its lignan fraction, and generous servings of fruits and vegetables into one's diet can significantly reduce cancer risk. Allium and cruciferous vegetables, with broccoli sprouts being a particularly dense source of sulforaphane, offer notable benefits. A cancer prevention diet should include protective elements like selenium, folic acid, vitamin B-12, vitamin D, chlorophyll, and antioxidants such as carotenoids (α-carotene, β-carotene, lycopene, lutein, cryptoxanthin). While oral ascorbic acid provides limited benefits, intravenous administration could prove highly beneficial. 

Additionally, the supplementary use of oral digestive enzymes and probiotics holds promise as anticancer dietary measures. Following the guidelines outlined here in constructing a diet could potentially result in a substantial 60 to 70 percent decrease in breast, colorectal, and prostate cancers, and even a 40 to 50 percent decrease in lung cancer, along with similar reductions in cancers at other sites. Such a diet not only serves as a preventive measure against cancer but also supports recovery from the disease.

Strong correlations have been established between high saturated fat intake and various cancer types. Chronic alcohol consumption is linked to an increased risk of cancers in the oral cavity, pharynx, esophagus, and larynx. Additionally, evidence exists regarding the impact of phosphorus and glutamate levels on cancer incidence. Various physiologically functional components found in dietary materials, such as fibers, are recognized for their antineoplastic properties. 

An antioxidant-rich diet is now considered a cancer-preventing dietary component. Recent research highlights the positive effects of natural carotenoids in normalizing epithelial cells, protecting against stomach and esophagus cancer, and enhancing the immune system. Various elements like fruit juices, processed vegetable juices, orange peel, green tea, vitamins, flavonoids, and trace materials exhibit cancer-inhibitory properties, indicating an increasing recognition of chemoprotective functions for the improvement of overall human health.

What are the foods that prevent cancer? There's no shortage of suggestions. However, recommendations from different studies can conflict with one another. Information on cancer prevention is still being developed. It is widely acknowledged, nevertheless, that food choices have an impact on cancer risk. To help prevent cancer, think about these best cancer-fighting foods to modify your diet.

List of Foods that Prevent Cancer

Even though traditional Chinese medicine and other ancient healing methods have known for hundreds of years how important nutrition is to overall health, nutrition is often overlooked in contemporary society. Nonetheless, according to the World Cancer Research Fund's (WCRF) cancer prevention recommendations, 30 to 50% of all cancer cases can be avoided by maintaining a healthy diet rich in cancer reducing foods and way of life. One should include following foods in your diet to make a healthy food list to help you manage your weight and to prevent the cancer occurrence:

1. Apples

The adage "an apple a day keeps the doctor away" might have some merit. Polyphenols found in apples show promise as anticancer agents. Plant-based substances called polyphenols are among foods that cure cancer. These may help to reduce inflammation, heart disease, and infections. According to research, polyphenols may alter specific mechanisms that can result in the development of cancer. A 2018 study indicates that apple phloretin dramatically slows the growth of breast cancer cells while having no effect on healthy cells. This polyphenol inhibits the glucose transporter 2 (GLUT2) protein, which is involved in the growth of advanced cancer cells.

2. Berries

Berries are high in dietary fiber, vitamins, and minerals. They might be beneficial to health because of their antioxidant content. According to research, lingonberries and bilberries may prevent the growth and development of tumors in cancers of the digestive tract. Berries may alter the immune system, potentially delaying the onset of cancer. They might also support immune therapies for cancer, though further study is needed to fully support this possibility.

3. Cruciferous Vegetables

Broccoli, cauliflower, and kale are examples of cruciferous vegetables. These vegetables are rich in vitamins C, K, and manganese. Additionally, cruciferous vegetables have a plant compound called sulforaphane that may have anticancer properties. It may dramatically reduce the growth of cancer cells and increase the death of cancer cells in colon cancer cells. Sulforaphane and the soybean compound ‘genistein’ together may dramatically reduce the growth and size of breast cancer tumors. Additionally, histone deacetylase (an enzyme linked to the emergence of cancer) is inhibited by sulforaphane.

4. Carrots

Carrots are a great source of antioxidants, vitamin K, and other important nutrients. The characteristic orange color of carrots is also a result of their high beta-carotene content. It is said that carrot consumption has also been linked to a decreased risk of colorectal cancer.

According to research, eating raw carrots may cut your risk of colorectal cancer by 17%. Furthermore, they proposed that raw carrots could guard against:

  • Lung cancer
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Leukaemia 

5. Fatty Fish

Omega-3 fatty acids, B vitamins, and potassium are among the many important nutrients found in fatty fish, which include salmon, mackerel, and anchovies. It is said that omega-3 fatty acids from fish may shield Asian patients from breast cancer. Some studies indicate that consuming fish is also linked to a decreased risk of colorectal cancer. A study indicates a correlation between fish oil supplementation and reduction in cancer risk to some extent.

6. Walnuts

All nuts seem to have anti-cancer qualities to some extent, according to the American Institute for Cancer Research, although walnuts have been the subject of more research than other varieties.A compound found in walnuts called pedunculagin is converted by the body into urolithins. Compounds called urolithins bind to estrogen receptors and may help prevent breast cancer. According to a study, certain genetic alterations that occur due to walnut consumption might inhibit the growth of cancerous cells in women with breast cancer.

7. Legumes

Because legumes like beans, peas, and lentils are high in dietary fiber, they may help reduce the risk of developing certain cancers. A study has established a connection between bean fiber consumption and reduction in breast cancer risk. It is said that persons who consumed a lot of bean fiber in their diet had a 20% lower risk of breast cancer than those who did not get the recommended amount of fiber each day.

8. Grapes

Red grape skins contain an antioxidant called resveratrol, which has demonstrated promise as a cancer-prevention strategy. Some researchers think that these anti cancer fruits might be used in cancer treatments in the future. In addition to resveratrol, the certain nutrients which have antioxidant and possibly cancer-fighting qualities are also present in grapes and grape seeds. These are flavonols,  anthocyanins, phenolic acids, proanthocyanidins, and other tannins/catechins found in red and purple grapes

9. Whole Grains

According to a 2020 review study, eating whole grains can reduce cancer risk by 6 to 12%. Whole grains may lower the risk of a few site-specific cancers, like colon, rectal, esophageal, stomach, and pancreatic. Contrary to whole grains, some scientific studies also indicate that high consumption of refined grains may increase the risk of colon and stomach cancer. Refined grains can be counted among the foods that can increase your cancer risk.

10. Dark Chocolate

A review study in 2022 suggested that the antioxidants, polyphenols and flavonoids present in dark chocolate can prevent cancer. It has been said that people who eat more chocolate have a 12 percent reduced risk of dying from cancer.

11. Olive Oil

One anti-cancer food that can lower a person's risk of developing any kind of cancer is olive oil.

12. Vitamins and Supplements

Furthermore, some nutrients and antioxidant supplements like vitamin C, vitamin E or even D may help prevent cancer because of the reduction in oxide stress caused. Most of the plant based substances such as sulforaphane, anthocyanin and phloretin can be obtained from these supplement capsules. Get medical advice before starting a new supplement or regimen of medications.


What foods are good for fighting cancer?

No single food is effective against cancer. Apples, berries, carrots, cruciferous vegetables, fatty fish, and more are among good foods for fighting cancer.

What foods help fight colon cancer?

Whole grains and cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, and kale are examples of foods that help to fight colon cancer.

What foods fight stomach cancer?

Natural carotenoids and whole grains help in fighting stomach cancer.

What is the best mushroom to fight cancer?

In Asia, there are over a hundred varieties of mushrooms that are used as cancer treatments. Reishi, turkey tail, shiitake, and maitake mushrooms are a few examples.

What are the best fruits to fight cancer?

Grapes and apples are the best fruits to fight cancer.

What are breast cancer fighting foods?

Fatty fish, apples, walnuts, legumes, olive oil, and cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, and kale are breast cancer fighting foods.

What are the best foods to prevent brain tumors?

Antioxidant rich foods can play a vital role in preventing brain tumors.

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