Health and Wellness Fridays – Top Cancer Fighting Foods

Welcome back dear friends to Health and Wellness Fridays! May your day be filled with joy and peace and as we move into the weekend may this follow you also.

Today, we going to look at everyday foods that have been identified as cancer fighting foods but before we get into that let’s start with the basics.

What is cancer?

Cancer is not a single disease.  In fact, cancer is the term used to classify a group of more than 100 diseases all of which are characterized by their uncontrolled abnormal growth of cells.   Cancer can start anywhere in the body.  When it starts cells grow out of control as malignant cells multiply forming tumors in organs and tissues.  This makes it hard for the body to work the way it should.

What causes cancer?

Cancer is a genetic disease. When the genetic material of a cell aka ‘the DNA’ is damaged, mutations can arise and this can potentially disrupt normal cell growth and division. 

An accumulation of these mutations can turn normal cells into precancerous cells, which sometimes multiply and evolve into cancer cells. Cancer is a result of the accumulation of these cells.  Cancer development is a process and it takes time to develop and is not something that just happens overnight.

How is cancer treated?

Some treatments of cancer include but are not limited to the following:

  • Surgery – the procedure in which a surgeon removes cancer from your body.
  • Radiation – uses high doses of radiation to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors.
  • Chemotherapy – uses drugs to kill cancer cells.
  • Immunotherapy– a type of treatment that helps your immune system fight cancer.
  • Hormone Therapy– a treatment that slows or stops the growth of breast and prostate cancers that use hormones to grow.
  • Stem Cell Transplant– are procedures that restore blood-forming stem cells in cancer patients who have had theirs destroyed by very high doses of chemotherapy or radiation therapy.
  • Precision Medicine– helps doctors select treatments that are most likely to help patients based on a genetic understanding of their disease.
  • Targeted Therapy – is a treatment that targets the changes in cancer cells that help them grow, divide, and spread.

Now that we’ve gotten all of that out of the way let’s look at some foods that have been reported to help in the fight against cancer.  I’ve heard and read many stories of persons who have made simple changes to their diet and have had remarkable results.

Eat, Nutrition, Food, Healthy, Vegetables, Detox

Let’s take a look at some of the popular foods:

  • Broccoli
  • Berries – (e.g. strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, goji berries)
  • Tomatoes
  • Garlic
  • Beans and peas
  • Leafy Green Vegetables (e.g. spinach, lettuce, patchoi
  • Cruciferous Vegetables – (e.g. cabbage, kale, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts)
  • Brightly Orange – Coloured Foods – (e.g. carrots, sweet potato, squash and citrus fruits)
  • Unrefined oils- (e.g. coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, flax oil and cod)
  • Nuts- (e.g. walnuts, brazil nuts and almonds)
  • Seeds – (e.g. chia seeds, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds and flaxseeds)
  • Probiotic foods – (e.g. kimchi, sauerkraut, coconut kefir, kombucha or natto)
  • Wild-Caught Fish
  • Mushrooms
  • Whole grains
  • Ginger
  • Beetroot
  • Grapes
  • Green Tea
  • Pomegranate
  • Dark chocolate
  • Turmeric
  • Increase your intake of alkaline water

Our first course of action to reduce our risks for cancer is to improve our diet.  “One day at a time” is my motto but we have to start sooner rather than later.  So we need to pay closer attention to what we’re putting into our bodies if we want to get the maximum use of them.

Have a wonderful weekend.  Thanks for stopping by. 🙂

 

Sources:

Health and Wellness Fridays – Turmeric

Welcome back to Health and Fridays!  Thank you Lord for seeing us through another week.   Today, we’re going to be listing some of the possible health benefits of using turmeric.

 

Turmeric or  Curcuma longa comes from the turmeric plant. It is a culinary spice used to add flavour and colour to a variety of dishes.  It is also used in herbal medicine and fabric dye.  It is native to India and Southeast Asia.  In its unprocessed form the root resembles the ginger root.  On the inside however, it is yellow in colour.  Turmeric is rich in iron and manganese. It is also a good source of vitamin B6, dietary fiber, copper, and potassium.

Turmeric can be obtained in many forms – some forms include natural root, ground powder form, as a supplement even as an essential oil.    According to the World’s Healthiest Foods, most of the studies done on turmeric tend to focus on its main active ingredient, curcumin.

Some of the studies done suggest the following benefits:

  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antioxidant
  • Boost brain function
  • Lower the risk for brain disease such as  Alzheimer’s and dementia
  • Lower risk of heart disease
  • Lower cancer risk
  • Help with depression
  • Treatment of gastrointestinal issues such as constipation and cramping
  • Ease menstrual symptoms
  • Cystic Fibrosis
  • Detoxifying the liver
  • Natural antiseptic and antibacterial agent
  • Alleviate pain
  • Slow the aging process
  • Acne
  • Rejuvenate the skin
  • Reduce the appearance of wrinkles

Here are some ways to use turmeric:

  • Add it to your meals along with black pepper.  Most of the curcumin that is ingested gets metabolized before it can get absorbed.  Piperine present in black pepper is said to help make curcumin more bio-available.
  • Add fat when consuming turmeric. Turmeric is fat-soluble and thus much better absorbed when taken with fat. Use healthy fats like olive oil, coconut oil, etc.
  • Drink it in tea. You can use either the powder or the fresh root. Add it to boiling water and allow it to simmer for 10 minutes.   I sometimes add a small piece of fresh ginger.  Strain into a cup and add a little honey to taste.
  • Apply on the skin in the form of a mask. Using some honey, yogurt or milk with a teaspoon of turmeric in a bowl. Mix ingredients in a bowl until it forms a smooth paste.  Apply to clean skin. Leave this mask on for at least 20 minutes before washing off.

Precautions and warnings:

  • If consumed in large quantities turmeric can have the following side effects on the body such as nausea, dizziness and diarrhea.
  • Turmeric might promote a menstrual period or stimulate the uterus, putting the pregnancy at risk as such it is suggested that it not be used in medicinal amounts during pregnancy.
  • Turmeric can make gallbladder problems worse. Do not use turmeric if you have gallstones or a bile duct obstruction.
  • Turmeric might slow blood clotting and might increase the risk of bruising and bleeding in people with bleeding disorders.
  • The Curcumin might decrease blood sugar in people with diabetes. Use with caution and moderation. Be sure to monitor your blood sugar.
  • Turmeric can cause stomach upset in some people. It might make stomach problems such as GERD worse. Avoid turmeric if it worsens symptoms of GERD.
  • Turmeric might lower testosterone levels and decrease sperm movement when taken by mouth by men. This might reduce fertility. Turmeric should be used cautiously by people trying to have a baby.
  • Taking high amounts of turmeric might prevent the absorption of iron. Turmeric should be used with caution in people with iron deficiency.
  • Turmeric might slow blood clotting. It might cause extra bleeding during and after surgery. Stop using turmeric at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.

As always remember, moderation is key and always consult your doctor. I can’t stress that enough.

Thanks for stopping by. Have a great weekend!  😉

Sources:

  • https://authoritynutrition.com/top-10-evidence-based-health-benefits-of-turmeric/
  • https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/herbs-and-spices/turmeric.html
  • http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=78#healthbenefits
  • https://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-6873/25-Reasons-Why-Turmeric-Can-Heal-You.html
  • http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-662-turmeric.aspx?activeingredientid=662