Enlist these foods to help prevent cancer

Plant foods, which contain antioxidants, may help reduce your risk for many cancers.

Try to eat approximately 2 cups of fruit, 2½ cups of vegetables, and plenty of grains, of which half should be whole grain, each day. Be sure to make room on your plate for the following nutrition-packed foods.

Blueberries

These small fruits contain anthocyanins, the antioxidants that give blueberries, cherries, plums, red and purple grapes, and red cabbage their color. Anthocyanins help neutralize cancer-causing substances and may help prevent gastrointestinal cancers.

Tasty tip: Freeze red or purple grapes and eat them frozen. Add blueberries or cherries to cereal, yogurt, or pudding.

Cruciferous vegetables

Broccoli, cabbage, bok choy, cauliflower, chard, kale, and brussels sprouts have substances that cause enzymes to be released into your system. These enzymes help break down chemicals that cause cancer and may slow early tumor growth.

Tasty tip: Add broccoli to salads and cabbage or chard to soups.

Orange foods

Beta-carotene is the pigment that colors pumpkins, carrots, acorn and winter squash, apricots, cantaloupe, mangoes, and sweet potatoes. It is also an antioxidant that may help prevent cancer cells from spreading.

Tasty tip: Use canned pumpkin puree as a savory soup base. Pack dried apricots and mangoes for a portable, chewy, sweet snack.

Tomatoes

Lycopene makes tomatoes red. It is also an antioxidant that may help prevent bladder, breast, cervical, digestive tract, lung, prostate, and skin cancers. Cooked tomatoes (in a little oil) provide more lycopene than raw tomatoes. Watermelon and pink grapefruit are other sources of lycopene.

Tasty tip: Try a refreshing grapefruit, guava, and papaya salad or end a meal with a slice of watermelon.

Tea

Green tea contains catechins, which are antioxidants that may protect against colon, skin, and stomach cancer. Black tea may help protect you, too.

Tasty tip: Iced or hot, tea is a healthy addition to any menu. Try chai, a fragrant Indian beverage of tea, milk, and sweet spices.

Whole grains

Brown rice, whole wheat pasta, bran cereal, and other whole grains may help stop cancer from starting and slow tumor growth.

Tasty tip: Start your day with at least two servings of whole grains, such as a full bowl of oatmeal or bran flakes, or two slices of whole wheat toast.

© 2000-2012 Krames StayWell, 780 Township Line Road, Yardley, PA 19067. All rights reserved. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.

©1996-2014 Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network are nonprofit corporations and independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. We provide health insurance in Michigan.

State and Federal Privacy laws prohibit unauthorized access to Member's private information. Individuals attempting unauthorized access will be prosecuted.

Site Map  |  Feedback  |  Important Legal and Privacy Information

Explanation of Level A Conformance
Better Business Bureau Online Seal of Reliability