When it comes to cancer, the name of the game is prevention and prostate cancer is no different. While there are many lifestyle choices that can help to reduce your risk—like quitting smoking, staying active and getting routine health screenings—the secret to prostate cancer prevention may be hiding in your diet.
Now, you probably already know that eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables provides numerous benefits, like:
· Lower cholesterol and blood pressure levels
· Healthy digestion
· Healthy skin and eyes
· Improved immunity
But did you know that a healthy diet may be the key to fighting prostate cancer, too? Not only can a balanced diet help to prevent this type of cancer all together, it can actually slow the growth and spread of cancer cells.
According to Christopher Hagenstad, MD, an oncologist affiliated with GMC’s Center for Cancer Care, you can help protect your prostate with these foods:
Tomatoes: Lycopene, the nutrient that gives tomatoes (guava, papaya and watermelon) their vibrant color is the same one that helps to fight cancer-causing carcinogens. This nutrient boosts your body’s protective capabilities, lowers your risk of prostate cancer and helps to slow the growth of cancer cells. It even helps to lower your risk of lung and stomach cancers, too.
Broccoli: As well as other cruciferous vegetables are rich in wide variety of nutrients. Most notably, the sulfur-containing chemicals, which become active compounds during digestion, have significant anti-cancer properties. While they’re helping to slow the growth of cancer cells, they’re also helping protect your DNA from the damaging effects of carcinogens, bacteria, inflammation and more.
Apples: The peel of an apple may become your favorite part of the fruit after learning of its many health benefits. In addition to fiber, calcium and potassium, apple peel also contains ursolic acid. This nutrient helps to fight the growth of cancer cells, as well as reduce inflammation and provide anti-microbial benefits.
Turmeric: This spice has a long history in traditional Asian medicine and not just because of its delicious flavor. This spice also contains curcumin, a substance that continues to gain attention for its potent antioxidant properties. Because of this, it can help to reduce inflammation, which is believed to play a role in cancer.
Red Grapes: Just like apple peels, the skin of red grapes may actually be the most nutritious part. Who knew so many nutrients could be found in something so small? In red grape skins is the nutrient resveratrol, which is believed to offer many health-boosting benefits, namely reducing inflammation. It isn’t just red grapes that offer this nutrient, though, it can also be found in red wine, purple grape juice and peanuts.
Take a bite out of cancer.
The truth is, cancer prevention starts with small, everyday habits that add up in a big way. It shouldn’t stop there, though. It’s also important to work with your doctor to ensure that you understand your unique risk factors.
In the event that you or a loved one is diagnosed with cancer, you can count on the experts at GMC’s Cancer Institute. With the latest in care options, experienced specialists and an extensive array of resources, you will receive customized care that’s as unique as you are.