FOODS THAT PREVENT CANCER
- FOODS THAT PREVENT CANCER
- CAUSES OF CANCER
- Factors that result in Cancer
- Foods that can reduce Cancer Risk
- Why plant based foods are great cancer-fighting sources.
- Tips for getting more plant-based foods in your diet
The rising cases of Cancer deaths have inspired me to write this article. These deaths being with close relatives have raised a potential alarm across my community for a need to address this rising killer of 21st century.
Nearly 500,000 people die from cancer in the United States alone every year. This given the fact that cancer is the second largest cause of death after heart disease in the country. Slowly the other third world countries are catching up to this with alarming rate of increase in the deaths. Odds are there that someone you know closely might have died from cancer.
Cause of cancer can be considered partially as an environmental disease and partially a hereditary one. The possibility of latter is rare and one of the unique features being occurrences of cancer in women more than that in Men.
Basically the functioning of vast amount of cells in our body are governed or programmed by the genes. These genes regulate the growth and survival of the cells like there are genes which promote and inhibit the growth and survival of cells. When these genes which inhibit the cell proliferation are disrupted in their genetic code this leads to uncontrolled mutations in the cells and causes tumour like condition which further leads to cancer.
CAUSES OF CANCER
Cancers can be caused primarily by external reasons such as environmental factors that is not genetic. Common environmental factors that contribute to cancer include: tobacco (25-30%), Unhealthy diet and obesity (30-35%), infections (15-20%), radiation (both ionizing and non-ionizing, up to 10%), emotional stress, lack of physical activity, and environmentally toxic pollutants & Chemicals.
The remaining 5%-10% cases of cancers are hereditary in nature. They are caused by mutated genes already existing in the genetic coding inherited from the ancestors.
Frankly speaking we all have cancerous cells in our body but their count is less than a billion which is limited by a strong immune system. The moment they break the threshold in a particular organ of the mutable count they develop into a lump or a tumour which is the initial stage of cancer.
Factors that result in Cancer
1. Toxins Accumulating In The Body
In today’s day and age, we are continually being exposed to numerous environmental and food related toxins. The modern man has been callous or has lost count of innumerable chemicals that enter our system and the effect that they have. These accumulations of toxins tend to produce free radicals in our metabolism, which in due course, damage the DNA. So it is now very crucial to identify and avoid them in the first place.
2. Environmental toxins:
One of the main culprits for the cause of cancer is the use of tobacco products and exposure to industrial and oil based smoke. Besides this
Air pollution, sun exposure(this is yet debatable),Toxic chemicals in domestic cleaners, household air fresheners, domestic insect sprays, soaps, personal hygiene products, and cosmetics contribute to the cause of cancer.
Radiation exposure from ionized and non-ionized sources such as CT scans, X-rays, and mammography which contribute to major percentage of cancer in many countries. Such medical diagnosis can have a retro effect and it can be wise to reduce exposure to ionizing radiation through such tests. We could instead opt for MRI.
Electromagnetic radiation from wireless and cellular devices also contributes to cancer risk. Such exposure to radiation increases the risk of salivary gland and brain tumours.
3. Emotional Stress
Constant negative emotional stress and anxiety can result in the body to generate free radicals which in course of time promotes DNA damage.
We could examine closely at our lives to identify anything that is out of balance. A sense of mental wellbeing helps in a major way to prevent many diseases other than cancer.
4. Dietary toxins:
One of the major ways to remain healthy is through proper consumption of organic food. Today’s farming is largely based on oil based pesticides and fertilizers which unknowingly introduces large amounts of chemical residues in our body. Moreover foods nowadays contain many Antibiotics and hormones which are given to the animal stock.
Genetically modified foods (GMO) such as canola oil and soy products are also swiftly catching on the race to introduce toxins in our systems. Preservatives and additives in processed foods such as artificial sweeteners can in some or the other way contribute to causing DNA damage. Besides this toxic gases released from Teflon cookware’s have shown to induce toxins in our system. Bis-phenol which is harmful chemical leaching out from plastic water bottles contaminates the water. This are especially toxic at high temperatures magnified.
It is crucial to maintain a healthy body weight throughout life. In the United States excess body weight is related with the development of many types of cancer and is a factor which contributes to 14–20% of all cancer deaths. Extra body weight raise the risk of many cancers, including breast cancer, colon cancer , oesophageal cancer, kidney, pancreatic, and urinary cancers.
6. Hormonal Imbalance
Hormones are instrumental the development of cancer by promoting cell proliferation. They are important agents in sex-related cancers such as breast cancer, endometrium, prostate cancer, ovarian cancer, and testis, and also of thyroid cancer and bone cancer.
In other cases non-genetic factors are relevant: overweight people have higher levels of some hormones associated with cancer and a higher risk of those cancers. Women who take hormone replacement therapies have a higher risk of developing cancers which are associated with those hormones.
The hormonal imbalance can be reinstated by cancer-protective genes in our body, for we need to live and eat in a balanced way so that unstable activity in hormones are not triggered.
Foods that can reduce Cancer Risk
There are many foods that can cause cancer and there are those which help strengthen our immune system which itself helps in lowering greatly the amount of risk of cancer. Let us discuss a few.
Focus on plant-based Natural Organic foods
Why plant based foods are great cancer-fighting sources.
This is due to the fact that plants have less fat molecules and , more fiber, This greatly limits the formation of free radicals and helps to strengthen your immune system and help your body fight off cancer. This would invariably mean that less processed the foods—the less they’ve been cooked(heat treatment), mixed with other artificial agents and less amount of nutrients , stripped off.
Tips for getting more plant-based foods in your diet
Breakfast: Add fruit and a few seeds or nuts to your whole grain breakfast cereal (oatmeal!).
Lunch: Try to include salad filled with beans and peas or other combo of veggies. Include whole grain bread for sandwiches and toasts. Have a side of veggies like cut up carrots, sauerkraut or a piece of fruit. One basic point is to cut down on your sugar intake, eat more of Brassica vegetables, these vegetables boost the body’s level of 2-hydroxyestrogen which helps in reducing breast cancer risk and these have more omega-3 fats and less omega-6 fats. Eat a large variety of organic vegetables and organic fruits, and have adequate protein and fibre. This helps to get a balanced dose of different antioxidants which protect against the free radicals formation.Make sure you have enough vitamin B12 as it works with folate to protect DNA from damage. Vitamin B12 is not found in plant foods but only in animal products, but instead of eating animal products which causes killing of many innocent animal we can have abundant dairy products which are great source of vitamin B12. Also do not over focus on just one particular antioxidant. Drink lots of water taking care to avoid plastic bottled water or mineral water.
Dinner: Add fresh veggies to your favourite pasta sauce or the rice dish. Avoid creamy pasta sauces, and replace with sautéed vegetables or tomato sauce made with healthy olive oil. Take care to have adequate protein at every meal and snack throughout the day, this will help the liver to eliminate toxins through the bile and stool. Protein also maintains a stable blood sugar level.
Increase fiber (soluble and insoluble) intake to reduce the risk of colon, breast, and prostate cancer. Aim for 40-50 grams a day which is more than double what an average American eats every day.
Dessert: Choose to have fruit instead of a richer dessert. The sugar in desserts is breeding grounds for cancer cells.
Buy organic products or locally grown foods , if possible. These are some great ways by which you can check the killer disease.