In 2013 cancer is still the second most common cause of death in the United States. This equates that nearly 1 of every 4 deaths are a result of cancer. There is no cure for breast cancer but it is believed that dietary fats may play a small, yet measurable, part in reducing your risk of breast cancer development. Here are some diet changes you can implement:
- Limit red meat and processed foods from your diet, and increase consumption of omega-3 fatty acids. Fish and fish oils, a lean protein source, is a great addition to a breast cancer prevention plan. Fish highest in omega-3 fatty acids include salmon, mackerel, sea bass and tuna.
- Another healthy fat you should add to your diet is ground flaxseed. Ground (milled) flaxseed has a component called lignans. Lignans have estrogen-like chemicals that allow them to act as antioxidants “free radical scavengers.”
- Walnuts offer a lot of nutrients and omega-3 fatty acids that help fight inflammation. Researchers even suggest that walnuts may be able to slow down breast cancer tumors which means it could serve as a preventative food and management after diagnosis.
- Orange fruits and vegetables are a rich source of Vitamin A (carotenoids) known to benefit in breast cancer prevention. Women with high levels of carotenoids in the bloodstream tend to have a lower risk of breast cancer, so make sure you increase your consumption of orange, red, yellow and dark leafy green foods.
- Blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and strawberries are sweet, delicious and full of rich colors. They are also filled with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants known to aid breast cancer prevention.
- According to Vann (n.d.), “Green tea and white tea both contain catechins, extracts that seem to show some benefit in breast cancer prevention. Research suggests that green tea is particularly effective at protecting your cells against environmental exposures that might increase the risk for cancer (12 Foods for Breast Cancer Prevention).”
As research improves and scientist continue to work towards a cure for cancer find some comfort in knowing that there are preventative measures you can take. Exercise daily, drink lots of water, and eat a diet rich in colorful fruits and vegetables, beans and grains instead of supplements.
Vann, M. (n.d.). 12 Foods for Breast Cancer Prevention. Retrieved from http://www.everydayhealth.com/breast-cancer-pictures/foods-for-breast-cancer-prevention.aspx#/slide-15