Prostate cancer is a big big thing nowadays. Just look at the statistics as to the number of men diagnosed with prostate cancer (overdiagnosed?). Just look at the number studies focused on this type of cancer.
That’s why scientists at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center give us a list of power fruits and vegetables to help prevent and fight prostate cancer.
Beans come in all shapes, sizes. They also come in different colors – black, white, red or green. Beans are rich in proteins, fiber, and flavonols which are also antioxidants, and are said to have anti-cancer properties.
Broccoli is a well-known cancer-fighting vegetable. Together with its cruciferous relatives Brussels sprouts, cabbage and cauliflower, it is a rich source of vitamins A and C, fiber, calcium and folate. However, the phytochemicals which give broccoli its strong anti-cancer properties are sulforaphane and glucosinate.
As a traditional remedy, garlic is on top of the list. It is good for the heart and the immune system. Aside antibacterial properties, it is also able to repair DNA. It has been shown to be effective against colorectal cancer as well as prostate cancer.
Tea, especially green tea is a potent weapon against cancer and cardiovascular disorder. Green tea has more antioxidants than black tea, wine or dark chocolate. A recent study showed that daily consumption of green tea decreased the levels of prostate cancer biomarkers in patients scheduled for radical prostatectomy.
Soy or soya is a rich source of isoflavones, which are plant phytochemicals. Isoflavones contain estrogens and can serve as hormone therapy to lower levels of testosterone. Soy is also supposed to be good for the heart and the vascular system and has been a popular alternative to meat and dairy protein sources. Caveat: the health benefits of soy have been a subject of controversy lately. I will write more about the pros and cons of soy in another post.
They are not only sweet, they are also healthy. Sweet potatoes are rich in B-carotene (hence the yellow color) and vitamin A. Just the kind of food you’d want to add to your armory of anti-cancer agents. According to the American Cancer Society, one medium-sized sweet potato is enough to provide the recommended daily allowance of vitamin A. Recently, researchers developed a purple type of sweet potato which contains anthocyanin, another antioxidant compound.
Tomatoes are rich in lycopene, a natural phytochemical with power antioxidant properties. According to the American Association for Cancer Research, lycopene helps to fight cell damage that may lead to prostate cancer. Tomatoes are also special because they do not lose their nutrients and antioxidants even with processing and cooking. Thus, it is not only fresh tomatoes but tomato sauce and tomato soup that can help fight cancer.
Watermelons are always thought be mostly water. However, it owes its red coloring to lycopene, the same cancer-fighting phytochemical found in tomato, and also in other red or pink-colored fruoits like guava and grapefruit. In addition, watermelon is also rich in vitamin C and beta-carotene.
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