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Cancer Prevention: What to Eat and What Not to Eat?

Just the other day I was watching the vivacious Sonali Bendre in one of the popular programs of Zee TV. The very next morning, social media sites came up with the news that she is suffering from cancer. Found it very difficult to believe as she looked quite fit and healthy though I know the shooting of the episodes must have taken place 1 or 2 months back. Hers is a case of metastatis cancer which means that cancer has already been spread from the main cell to the other parts of the body and she has reached the fourth stage. This means that all these months she was not aware of the fact that she was carrying cancer cells in her body as she looked absolutely fine. Similarly, got the news of Irfan Khan suffering from a rare kind of neuro cancer a few months back. Bollywood stars are usually known to be health and fitness freaks, but even then, you never know when this dreaded disease catches you.

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Prevention of cancer through food 

Immediately, I started surfing the net for Cancer prevention tips. Well, maintaining a healthy lifestyle is the basic mantra to prevent us from any diseases. One of the best ways to prevent cancer is through diet. By avoiding foods that increase your risk of cancer and eating more of those food items that boost your immune system and protect your health, you can prevent cancer to a great extent.

So what should you eat and what should you avoid eating:

What to eat to prevent cancer

  • Eat foods that are rich in antioxidants. Antioxidants reduce the risk of damage from oxidants as oxidants can lead to cell damage. Antioxidants rich foods include carrots, Brussels sprouts, squash, spinach, broccoli, beans, oranges, berries, peas, bell peppers, dark leafy greens and other foods high in vitamin C etc.
  • Eat plant-based foods containing phytochemicals. Such phytochemicals include Carotenoids, found in red, orange, yellow, and some dark-green vegetables, Polyphenols, found in herbs, spices, vegetables, green tea, apples, and berries and Allium compounds, found in chives, garlic, and onions
  • Eat foods rich in dietary fibers which help in regular bowel movement, thereby releasing out the toxins from the body. These include vegetables like as beets, broccoli, cabbage kale, tomatoes, spinach, corn, cauliflower; fruits like as oranges, kiwis, papaya, prunes, berries, guava, bananas, apples, peaches, figs; Nuts and seeds; grains and cereals like millet, barley, wheat, brown rice, whole grain, oats, wild rice, legumes etc.
  • Always include vitamins and minerals in your diet, which are found in citrus fruits, vegetables, milk and dairy foods, fish, lean meat, eggs
  • Don’t forget to add Indian spices in your food or diet: Indian spices contain phytochemicals, which are known to keep cancer at bay and stimulate the immune system. The best known spices to include in your diet are turmeric, garlic, ginger, black pepper, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, clove etc.

What not to eat to prevent cancer?

To prevent from cancer or to fight against cancer, some foods that you should avoid are as follows:

  • Processed meat
  • Red meat
  • Fried, burnt and overly cooked foods
  • Deep fried, grilled, barbequed, baked meats
  • Excessive intake of salt, sug​ar, and oily foods
  • Foods high in additives
  • Preserved foods
  • Alcohol etc.

To eat the right foods in right quantity can help us to prevent from many diseases, including cancer. It has rightly been said, “Prevention is better than cure”. So, start following a healthy diet right now!!!

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