One of the most dangerous diseases that threaten people globally is cancer. Apart from medicinal and therapeutic treatments, cancer can be cured and prevented naturally by following a healthy life style and diet. Eating the right food, in the right amount and cooked rightly is important to provide the body with nutrients that help fight cancer, boost immunity and improve the general health. Some dos and don’ts of an ideal diet that helps prevent cancer naturally and effectively are:
Plant Based Food
A plant based diet consisting primarily of fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes and whole grains is ideal for preventing cancer. Consuming these foods as fresh and raw as possible and avoiding to eat their over- cooked, packed and processed forms is most advisable. This is because cooking, peeling, processing, and combining such foods with other ingredients strips off the vital nutrients from them and thereby decreases their nutritional value. Two third part of the good diet for cancer preventive diet should consist of plant based food while the remaining types of food like dairy products and meat can make up the remaining one third. Fruits like grapefruit, berries, pomegranate, orange, mango; vegetables like broccoli, tomatoes, Brussels sprouts ; nuts like peanut and almond; legumes like kidney beans, chick pea, lentils; and whole grains like brown rice, oats and barley are some of the inclusions in a plant food centric diet.
Fiber Rich Food
Fibre rich foods create roughage in the body and thereby promote detoxification. They help to eliminate the toxins from the body and improve digestion and bowel movement. Fibre foods help to flush out cancer causing compounds out of the body and thereby help in preventing cancer. They promote easy food circulation through the digestive tract, cleanses the digestive system and keeps it healthy. Fruits, vegetables and whole grains are rich fibrous foods while dairy product, meats and nuts consist of negligible or no amount of fibre. It is also important to note that raw and unprocessed foods have higher fibre content than processed foods. Hence it is advisable to particularly eat more fresh foods in a cancer diet. Brown rice, celery, cabbage, bran, broccoli, kidney beans, green leafy vegetables, squashes, orange etc are highly fibrous foods that should be ideally incorporated in a cancer prevention diet.
Less Of Meats
High fat and low fibre diets are known to cause cancer. Meats are foods that are rich in saturated fats and have dangerous effects on the health like triggering obesity, prostate and bowel cancer, heart ailments etc. Meats have minimal or no fibre content and hence do not render any detoxifying or anti carcinogenic properties to the body. Moreover, meats can develop carcinogenic compounds in them if cooked through certain ways. It has been found that vegetarians are 50% less likely to develop cancer compared to non vegetarians because of these reasons. Hence one should stick to minimal consumption of meat try to consume a low or no meat diet to effectively treat and prevent cancer. Choosing lean meat over red meat, reduce the portion size, eating it occasionally as side flavouring, adding beans to meat and avoiding processed meat are some ways in which one can intake meat as a part of the diet.
A high content of unhealthy saturated fats and transfats in the diet is a prime cause of cancer. Animal foods like whole milk, dairy products, red meat, eggs, and partially hydrogenated oils are some examples of foods containing these fats which should be avoided in a cancer preventive diet. However, some unsaturated fats and fatty acids like Omega 3 fatty acid are healthy and essential for the body as they display potent cancer and inflammation fighting properties. They also help to keep the brain and the heart healthy. Foods like tuna, flaxseed, tuna etc contain these essential fats and hence should be incorporated in the diet.
Unhealthy eating habits trigger the occurrence of cancer. Limiting the intake of unhealthy, fatty and oily food can automatically reduce the intake of unhealthy fats. Eating fat trimmed meat and non fat dairy products, cooking in olive or flaxseed oil, reducing the intake of eggs, meat, butter etc, avoiding consuming packaged and junk food, adding nuts to the diet and consuming fish ones a week are some ways in which one can consume fats in a healthy and optimal way.
Cancer Fighting Foods
The immune system of the body is responsible for eliminating and warding off disease causing foreign elements from the system and keeping the body healthy. Healthy and strong immunity is an essential requisite for treating and preventing cancer as it helps to inhibit the creation and growth and of cancerous cells in the body. Nourishing the body aptly with all the essential nutrients and keeping it well hydrated is important for enhancing immunity and limiting the growth of cancer. Fruits and vegetables rich in beta carotene, vitamin C, vitamin E, selenium and other phyonutrients display potent antimicrobial properties that help to fight infections, promote proper functioning of the cells and enhance immunity. Spices like turmeric, basil, coriander, cloves, rosemary etc do not only add flavour to the food but their antimicrobial, anti inflammatory and antiseptic properties render many curative benefits, one of them being boosting immunity. Drinking lots of water also contributes in preventing cancer as it washes away unhealthy toxins from the system especially cancer causing germs effectively. It also ensures proper circulation and transfer of vital nutrients to all parts of the body. Hence incorporating the right cancer fighting foods in the regular diet is very essential to keep this dangerous ailment away.
Preparing Food The Right Way
Choosing the right food is essential to create an effective cancer preventive diet but equally important is the storage and preparation procedure of the food. Washing fruits and vegetables thoroughly with water to remove the harmful germs, chemicals and pesticides; avoiding cooking food at high temperature; steaming or boiling vegetables until just tender to avoid stripping them off vital nutrients; and eating fresh meat and not the processed form are some important practices to ensure good health. Charring or barbequing meat makes it carcinogenic in nature and hence meat should never be burnt and eaten. Eating fresh foods and avoiding mouldy ones is essential to avoid cancer as the aflatoxin present in these mouldy foods are carcinogenic and thus cause cancer. These practices help to retain the vital nutrients of the food while eliminating unhealthy germs and microbes. They thereby help to improve the overall health, fight infections, boost immunity and above all help to prevent cancer.