Foods that Will Help You Fight Breast Cancer

Anne Dolce
Anne Dolce

When people are diagnosed with breast cancer they can feel as if they've lost all control - of their life, their health, and their happiness. As the diagnosis sets in and treatments begin, patients devote themselves to cancer-healing regimens and their bodies may feel the effects along the way. Recently, The Daily Meal reviewed a cookbook that educates readers on the effects one's diet can have on the body when battling cancer.

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Co-author and cancer survivor Kendall Scott feels very strongly about the message of her book, especially during October. Breast Cancer Awareness Month is about more than just the "boobs and tatas" that so many campaigns and catchy slogans focus on, she says, but it's about the person behind the breasts who is suffering from cancer. Nutrition is Scott's answer to that; feeding the body and making it strong enough to stave off cancer. Nothing is more important to us at The Daily Meal than supporting the fight against breast cancer through food, so we asked Scott to work with us to come up with a list of foods that will help women (and men for that matter) fight cancer before, during, and after diagnosis. While there are many things that may cause breast cancer, Scott told us that diet is closely linked, and fortunately enough, it's one thing we have control of. Educate yourself on these breast-cancer fighting foods and add them to your shopping list right away.

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Omega-3-Rich Foods

Scott tells us that certain studies have said that omega-3-rich foods such as walnuts, chia seeds, flax seeds, and fatty fish, are great for supporting breast health. They also reduce inflammation, which is often the cause of cancer cell growth and can damage healthy tissues.

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Green Tea

Green tea is rich in an antioxidant called catechin, explains Scott. Catechin finds free radicals throughout the body that are harmful to DNA and cause cancer, and they reduce the growth of new blood vessels that are required for tumors to grow.

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Aside from being incredibly flavorful, turmeric also contains an anti-inflammatory compound called curcumin, which inhibits the growth of cancer cells. Scott's cooking tip for turmeric is to add a little black pepper to the dish it's in, as it aids the body in absorption of the compound.

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This member of the Allium family protects the body's cells from carcinogens and disrupts the metabolism of tumor cells. Other relatives of garlic such as onions, shallots, leeks, and chives, are also high in sulfur-containing phytochemicals and should not be overlooked, says Scott.

Whole Grains

Whole grains such as brown rice, quinoa, oats, and millet are great for fighting cancer because they're complex carbohydrates that are a great source of fiber. Scott explains that research has shown that a low fiber intake ups the risk for breast cancer, so whole grains are a great source for bulking up.

Click here to see more Foods That Will Help You Fight Breast Cancer

-Anne Dolce, The Daily Meal