We all know that a healthy, balanced diet is one of the best ways to stave off cancer, but now, a new research study reveals the exact fruits and vegetables we should be eating if we want to reduce our risk of breast cancer. Get ready to make a shopping list.
Reported in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, a new study found that women who eat a lot of carotenoids–the micronutrients found in red, yellow and deeply colored fruits and vegetables actually had a lower risk of getting breast cancer and a highly like of fighting certain types of this disease.
Dr. Heather Eliassen the assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School who analyzed the data from eight different studies says that women with carotenoid levels in the the top 20% had a 15-20% reduced risk of breast cancer:
It looks like it is a linear relationship. The higher you go, the [lower] your risk is. There is some benefit at a moderate level of carotenoids and there is even more benefit at a higher level.
Meaning, the more dark fruits and veggies you eat, the lower your risk for getting this disease. It can also help treat certain types of breast cancer, like estrogen-receptor negative (ER-) cancer, which is notoriously difficult to cure, she said:
I think this is an interesting finding given that the common risk factors we know about are a lot more profoundly associated with the ER + tumors, like having children, breast feeding, the age you go through menopause and weight gain and older women. We don’t know a lot about what factors contribute to ER- breast cancers and what could be effective.
So get your shopping list ready. Here are some of the best fruit and veggie choices to ward off breast cancer:
– sweet potatoes
– collard greens
– bell peppers (red, yellow and green)